The government of The Gambia and Africa50 have signed the Shareholders Agreement that will allow a newly created special purpose vehicle, Transgambia Bridge Company Ltd, to operate and maintain the Senegambia Bridge, under Africa50’s Asset Recycling Programme.
The Gambia recently joined Africa50’s Asset Recycling Programme, an innovative way for governments to unlock capital currently immobilized in state-owned infrastructure assets by presenting them to credible private institutions that will pay a fair price to the government for the right to manage, operate and in certain instances improve the assets over a pre-determined period under a concession framework. The capital released from such assets can be used to invest further into infrastructure, providing additional financial resources for many Governments.
The bridge has great significance for the Trans-Gambia road, a vital transportation corridor in the West African sub-region that links Dakar in Senegal to Banjul in The Gambia. It also serves as a crucial node between the northern and southern sections of the Cairo-Dakar-Lagos Corridor, facilitating the efficient movement of goods and people, and promoting trade within the sub-region and between the two countries.
The Shareholders Agreement was signed during a two-day visit by the President of the African Development Bank and Chairman of Africa50’s Board, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina to the Gambia. He said the Senegambia Bridge is key to economic development and strategic for regional trade. “The impact of the Senegambia Bridge has been transformational. I want to thank H.E. President Adama Barrow for his foresight in joining Africa50’s Asset Recycling Programme. It is a sound way of managing scarce resources”, the President added.
Honourable Seedy K. M. Keita, Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, signed the Shareholders Agreement on behalf of the Government of The Gambia and Demba Diallo, Managing Director and Head of Project Development, signed for Africa50.
“This signing is a win-win situation for The Gambia and Africa50 as it is going to unleash additional capital for our development needs without the state incurring any additional debt. We expect enhanced revenue performance and efficient management of this public asset and I am happy about the developments so far because it is a step in the right direction,” said Honourable Seedy K. M. Keita, Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs.
Commenting during the signing ceremony, Demba Diallo, Managing Director and Head of Project Development, at Africa50 said: “Africa50 has proven to be a trusted partner in delivering sustainable infrastructure across the continent to support economic development. We are pleased to be partnering with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that the Senegambia Bridge brings additional value to the country while boosting regional trade, the movement of people, and supporting the African Continental Free Trade Area.”