The funds go towards upgrading a stretch of the ‘coastal’ road that connects the country’s two main port cities, Abidjan and San Pedro, for a 93 km section between the towns of Dabou and Grand Lahou. The project includes improving the drainage and wastewater network to reduce the risk of flooding, enhance the road’s safety and reduce congestion.
VINCI Construction, through its subsidiary Sogea-Satom, is the appointed contractor for the project, and the financing was backed by Bpifrance Assurance Export, the French Export Credit Agency. The financing package was structured by Standard Chartered in its roles as Global Co-ordinator and Structuring Bank, Social Loan Coordinator, Bookrunner and Mandated Lead Arranger.
The financing is fully compliant with the Social Loan Principles, given the project’s objective of improving basic transport networks (categorised as affordable basic infrastructure). The project will also contribute towards meeting the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 9, which relates to industry, innovation and infrastructure particularly in the emerging markets.
This announcement comes at a time when San Pedro prepares to host the Africa Cup of Nations in 2023, which will attract many local and international visitors. The newly refurbished section of the roadway will help to improve the connection from Abidjan, a main point of entry for international travelers. In the long term, the rehabilitation of the coastal road will have a positive impact on the local economy, trade, and tourism.
Mustafa Sajjad Hussain, Structured Export Finance, Standard Chartered Bank, said: “We are proud to work with the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire and Bpifrance Assurance Export once again, using our expertise in export credit financing to provide a Social Loan to rehabilitate critical infrastructure.”
John Mokom, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bank Côte d’Ivoire, said: “Our involvement in the project is a prime example of Standard Chartered living up to its brand promise, here for good, and supporting our local communities.”
This transaction marks another significant ECA-supported term facility arranged by Standard Chartered for the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire. In the last eighteen months, the Bank has successfully structured several financing solutions to address the needs of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, including improving public transport in Abidjan and a network of maternity wards across Côte d’Ivoire.