On August 13, in Niamey, Bolloré Group and the governments of Niger and Benin signed concession agreements to build and operate the railway infrastructure linking Niamey to Cotonou.
The Prime Minister of Benin, Lionel Zinsou, and his counterpart from Niger, Brigi Rafini, on August 13, 2015, proceeded to the signing of the documents that will govern this stretch of 1050 km between Cotonou and Niamey. The Bolloré Group was represented by Thierry Ballard, CEO of railway operations.
A new milestone has been passed on the road to the construction and development of the ambitious West African rail loop, a project in which Bolloré Group is the strategic partner. The loop should ultimately connect five countries (Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Niger, Benin, Togo) thus opening up landlocked areas throughout the whole sub-region.
Bénirail, new concessionaire of the line, has a capital of 70 billion CFA francs (106 million euros), 40% owned by the Bolloré Group, while Benin and Niger have 10% each. The remaining 40% are reserved for Niger and Benin private investors.
Collaborators of Organisation Commune Benin Niger (OCBN), former operator of the line Cotonou – Niamey, will be recruited in Bénirail company which also committed itself to pay their wage arrears.
” This is a key event for the infrastructures of Benin and Niger. Both presidents —Boni Yayi and Issoufou — view it as a priority for their national infrastructure. Never has there been such an important investment in a West African country. “said Lionel Zinsou, Prime Minister of Benin