Sub-regional integration CFA Francs 1.6 billion set aside for feasibility studies on the extension of the Cameroon-Chad railway line

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L’accord de prêt y relatif a été co-signé ce 20 février 2021 à Yaoundé par le Ministre de l’Economie, de la Planification et de l’Aménagement du Territoire, Alamine OUSMANE MEY et le Responsable-Pays de la Banque Africaine de Développement (BAD) au Cameroun, Solomane KONE. C’était en présence du Ministre tchadien des Infrastructures et des Transports, Ahmad Abakar Adjid, du Ministre camerounais des Transports, Ernest Masséna Ngalle BIBEHE et du Secrétaire d’Etat auprès du Ministre camerounais des Travaux Publics, Armand DJODOM.

CFA Francs 3.2 billion. This is the total cost of feasibility studies to extend the railway line between Cameroon and Chad. This amount is provided in equal shares by the African Investment Fund (one of the AfDB’s windows) through a donation of CFA Francs 1.6 billion to the Republic of Chad, and a concessional loan of CFA Francs 1.6 billion to the Republic of Cameroon. On the heels of Chad, Cameroon has just benefitted from resources necessary for the conduct of these feasibility studies. The outcome of this study will enable to establish the socio-economic viability of the railway line and determine the best (socio-economic) solution, while taking into consideration the prevailing institutional, social and environmental conditions.
For the AfDB country-official to Cameroon, this signature of the funding agreement is a response to the desire to ensure smooth maturation of the project to extend the Cameroon-Chad railway line. MINEPAT invited the administrations of the two countries in charge of monitoring this project to quickly meet the legitimate expectations of the population by respecting the execution calendar of the studies whose results are highly awaited within twenty (22) months.
While lauding the key role played by the AfDB in funding integrating projects in Central Africa, Alamine Ousmane Mey outlined the stakes of the project whose feasibility studies were made public. To him, the extension project of the Cameroon-Chad railway line is primarily geared towards strengthening sub-regional integration in Central Africa. It also aims at facilitating and boosting transit activities between the two countries, lightening the burden on the road network and avoiding the disruption of loads which unfortunately increases transport costs and negatively impacts on the competitiveness of goods from Douala and meant to be sold at Ndjamena. At the environmental level, the construction of this railway line will contribute to green growth in both States, thereby facilitating an increase in trade using the railway, a less polluting mode of transport as compared to road transport.
‘‘It is an ambitious project which falls squarely in line with the implementation of AfDB’s regional integration strategy paper for Central Africa during the 2019-2025 period’’, Solomane Kone declared. This project also aligns with the implementation of CEMAC’s regional development programme for transport infrastructure.