China Exim Bank to provide financing for San Pedro-Man Railway in Cote d'Ivoire
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Funding agency [Type]
Export-Import Bank of China [State-owned Policy Bank]
Transport and storage (Code: 210)
During an official visit to Beijing in July 2012, the Chinese Government reportedly opened a credit line to the Government of Cote d'Ivoire for various priority projects including a railway project between the city of Man, near the Guinea and Liberia borders, and the San Pedro port. Several sources report that China Exim Bank provided this preferential credit line for at least some of the total $2 billion USD cost (see: Africa Mining Intelligence, IHS Global Insight, Jeunea Afrique, Agence Ecofin). According to an article from Africa Mining Intelligence, on 4 May 2013, the Government of Cote d'Ivoire awarded a 800 billion CFA direct contract (no competitive bidding) to China Railway Group (CREC) for the San Pedro-Man railway (Chemin de fer San Pedro-Man) The construction start and end dates are unknown. According to African Mining Intelligence, this project was implemented through an unspecified public-private partnership (PPP). The purpose of this project is to transport valuable minerals like nickel and iron ore being mined by Sama Resources, Tata Steel and Africa Minerals (see: West Africa Newsletter). Moreover, timber and cocoa will be transported on this railway. Based on a lack of information and a 2017 Acturoutes article, works and Chinese financing seem to have been suspended, and the project scope expanded. Official sources such as the Ministry of Transport call this the Mineral Railway (Chemin de Fer Mineralier) connecting San Pédro to Mount Nimba, a nature reserve on the borders of Cote d'Ivoire, Guinea, and Liberia. It will pass through San Pedro, Man, Touba, Odiene and Bougouni at a cost of 1,829 billion EUR or 1,200,000 Billion FCFA. The Ivorian PPP Committee says this is just one component of the West Integrated Mining Development Project in which the railway costs 678 billion CFA (1.033 million EUR or 1.356 million USD) but financiers were yet to be identified. According to an Interview with the San Pedro General Manager, this railway project is under phase III occuring beyond 2020 under a master plan to develop the port city. According to a 2019 MOFCOM source, the governments of Guinea and Cote d'Ivoire recently reached a consensus around construction a railway to connect San Pedro and Monts Nimba.
Number of official sources
Number of unofficial sources
Implementing agencies [Type]
China Railway Group Limited (CREC) [State-owned Company]; Government of Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast) [Government Agency]