ABIDJAN, April 2 (Reuters) - Export-Import Bank of China (EximBank) will lend 100 billion CFA francs ($210 million) to Ivory Coast to overhaul its public transportation sector, the West African nation’s government spokesman said.
Speaking to journalists following a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Bruno Kone said the loan would carry a concessional interest rate but declined to give further details on the lending conditions for the deal.
“This will target the acquisition of new vehicles to renew our ageing fleet, which is often the cause of accidents,” Kone said. “Some 50,000 vehicles will be concerned over a period of five years.”
Ivory Coast - the world’s top cocoa grower and French-speaking West Africa’s largest economy - is emerging from a decade-long political crisis that ended in a 2011 civil war.
The government of President Alassane Ouattara is borrowing heavily to fund a makeover of the country’s infrastructure in an effort to fuel economic growth. It plans to issue a $500 million Eurobond later this year.
$1 = 476.4360 CFA Francs Reporting by Loucoumane Coulibaly; Editing by Joe Bavier and Mark Potter