The World Bank on June 16 approved a 385 million dollar financial package from the International Development Association for the building of an electricity interconnection project between Cameroon and Chad.
“The operation approved today is considered by the two countries as a priority project which would permit them to overcome the challenges confronting their respective energy sectors..
“It would assure the financing of the first high tension interconnection structure in Central Africa, thus putting the electrical energy sources in the South of Cameroon at the disposal of the northern part of the country and Chad as well as ensure millions of inhabitants in these two countries, viable and affordable electricity,” explained the World Bank.
The project is part of efforts put in place by the Sahel Alliance to accelerate development and attack the causes of fragility within the Lake Chad region. It also supports the national development strategies of Cameroon and Chad which all put an accent on the important role access to electricity plays in the amelioration of the living conditions of inhabitants.
According to Deborah Wetzel, Director of Regional Integration for Sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East and North Africa at the World Bank, “The reinforcement of regional electricity interconnection is particularly important for growth, the creation of jobs and economic transformation.
The official said that the new project would also play a crucial role in the amelioration of access to electricity for the populations who were among the poorest in the continent thus contributing to reduce inequality.
Cameroon recently obtained a loan of 244.4 million dollarr from the African Development Bank for financing the same project. Also, on February 21, 2019, Cameroon signed a financial agreement with the European Union (EU) for the sum of 39 million dollars still to be invested on the same infrastructure.
Originally estimated at about 524 million dollars during the signing of the agreement with the EU, the cost of the project has over time been reviewed upwards and funds already mobilised now stand at about 784 million dollars.