The African Development Bank– AfDB has approved a grant of €40.94 million on April 30th, 2020 for the construction of a bridge to connect the Northern part of Cameroon to the southern area of Chad across the Logone River, which runs between both countries.
The grants will be rationed into two different tranches, a €20.785 million advance for Cameroon and €19.215 million credit for the Republic of Chad.
The financial raise comes from an Investment provision for African countries under a framework agreement between the African bank Group and the European Commission called Pillar Assessed Grant, which was documented on September 25, 2017.
Additionally, the funds will cater to the construction of the access roads that lead to the bridge on the part of the two regions and the execution of feasibility studies on the project.
The dynamics of business between both countries is largely affected by an existing infrastructural deficit on both sides, mostly on the part of Chad, due to its landlocked geography, which deprives the country of a seaport.
Unfortunately, the Central African country is heavily dependent on the Port of Douala in Cameroon, because of its close proximity to the sea, which facilitates the movement of export and import commodities.
This also has a ripple effect on the cost of transportation and the supply chain of goods and services.
AfDB believes the realization of the project will extensively enhance the ease of doing business between both francophone nations through reduced travel time, transportation cost, as well as improve the accessibility of basic services for transit communities.
In addition, it will also reinforce bilateral and sub-regional integration and cross-border trade, and boost socio-cultural ties between the two countries.
According to a press release by the AfDB, other groundbreaking projects under the portfolio of the Pillar Assessed Grant or Delegation Agreement (PAGODA), include the rehabilitation of the Lome-Cotonou road, transport facilitation on the Bamako-San Pedro corridor between Mali and Côte d’Ivoire, and the rehabilitation of the CU2a community road section in Burkina Faso near the border with Niger.
Under the PAGODA, the African Development Bank and European Commission through a joint finance system are extensively committed to projects on infrastructure, nutrition, integration, industrialization and amelioration of the quality of life for Africans.