ECOWAS strategizes development of the Praia-Dakar-Abidjan corridor26 Mar, 2019
Praia, 26th March, 2019. Road and Maritime Sector Ministers of the Member States of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) involved in the Praia-Dakar-Abidjan Corridor expressed commitment to ensure the expedited ratification of the corridor Treaty signed on the margins of the 51st Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government in June 2017 which includes the construction of a 6 lane dual-carriage highway from Dakar to Abidjan which is part of the larger Praia-Dakar-Lagos Corridor.
The program which seeks to develop the Coastal Corridor Praia-Dakar-Abidjan with a distance of approximately 3,164 kilometers (Dakar-Abidjan) will comprise of Road, Rail, Maritime and Air Transport modes.
During a Ministerial meeting which held on 21st March 2019 in Praia, Cabo Verde, the Ministers stressed the need to expedite the ratification of the Treaty by their respective parliaments, which they stated will serve as a key document required by financiers to fund the project.
In terms of the construction of the 6-lane Highway, they urged the Commission to finalize the Terms of Reference in consultation with Member States and the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) in order to quickly study and agree on an optimal alignment for the feasibility and detailed design studies for the highway.
Also the Commission and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) will jointly advocate for financing from other multinationals and regional banks such as the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) and the West African Development Bank (Banque ouest africaine de développement – BOAD), for the technical studies.
The ECOWAS Commission’s Commissioner for Infrastructure, Pathe Gueye stated that the Praia-Dakar-Abidjan Corridor Highway which is the second phase of the Dakar-Abidjan-Lagos project, is classified as a priority under the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA).
“Indeed, the Praia-Dakar-Abidjan corridor extends from Praia in Cabo Verde to Abidjan in the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire with a maritime link on the Praia-Dakar section that crosses five other West African countries. (The Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia).The section of Dakar to Abidjan covers an approximate distance of 3,500 kilometers and the implementation of this program will boost the development of our region”, he said.
Regarding the maritime link, a feasibility study has already been completed for the Praia-Dakar maritime services and financial advisory services will be conducted to secure investments for implementation. Also a feasibility of shipping services and an assessment study of all major seaports along the corridor will be conducted to improve the capacity, efficiency of operations, security and multi-modalism of maritime transport in the region.
The Ministerial meeting was preceded by an experts meeting which examined the overview of the Corridor Development Program, maritime transport and port development, the corridor highway alignment, and financing.
In attendance of the Ministerial meeting was its chairman, the Minister of Infrastructure and Transport of Senegal, Mr. Abdoulaye Daouda Diallo, Ministers and representatives from Cabo Verde, Cote d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Guinea Bissau and Liberia as well as several development partners.
The next Ministerial meeting is expected to take place in Guinea in September 2019.