Malian road network expands

By Richard High07 January 2009

Work on the Sékokoto-Bafing et Bafing - Kéniéba - Falémé roads in Mali, which is being funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, has started with an official ground breaking ceremony performed by President Amadou Toumani Touré.

The project is part of Mali's road improvement and transport facilitation programme on the Bamako-Dakar corridor, which is partly financed by the AfDB. This aims to strengthen economic integration efforts and sub-regional cooperation among member countries of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) and the Economic Commission for West African States (ECOWAS).

The project is expected to cost an estimated US$ 300 million, with the AfDB providing about US$ 90 million, including about US$ 75 million to Mali.

Work on the section that has been commissioned will cover some 229 km and is funded by the AfDB (75 %), the West African Development Bank (14 %) and the Malian government (11%).

WAEMU is an organization of eight West Africa states established to promote economic integration among countries that share a common currency, the CFA (Colonies Françaises d'Afrique - French colonies of Africa) franc. It was created at Dakar, Senegal, on January 10, 1994.

Members of WAEMU currently include Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Togo and Guinea-Bissau.

ECOWAS is a regional group of fifteen West African countries, founded on May 28, 1975 with the signing of the Treaty of Lagos. Its mission is to promote economic integration.

In 1976 Cape Verde joined ECOWAS, and in December 2000 Mauritania withdrew, having announced its intention to do so in December 1999.

Members currently include Member states of ECOWAS include: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.

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