Ouagadougou- Burkina Faso (PANA) -- Investments by the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA) in Burkina Faso reached about US$153 million (CFA76.
5 billion francs) last year, making BADEA the single biggest contributor in the country, an official source revealed here Friday.
The amount represents 21% of the total aid granted by multilateral Arab financial institutions estimated at US$651 million in 2005.
According to Mahfoud Bengrine, expert civil engineer at BADEA, the bank's operations in Burkina Faso cover drinking water supply projects to the building of huge dams such as that located at Bagré, which cost over CFA 76 billion.
In addition to health, education and energy, the bulk of BADEA's assistance goes toward road and rail infrastructure.
Last Thursday, the BADEA and five other Arab multilateral financial bodies signed in Ouagadougou a financing accord worth US$52 million (CFA 26 billion francs) for the construction and asphalting of the Yéguéresso-Diébougou-Hamélé highway (at the border with Ghana) with an overall cost of CFA30 billion francs (US$60 million).
This road is for Mali and Burkina Faso the main access to the Ghanaian ports of Tema and Takoradi.
Asphalting this 350-km highway will give seaport access to the economies of both countries.
BADEA committed CFA 6 billion francs to the project.
Established in 1973 by the Arab League, BADEA, with headquarters in Khartoum, Sudan, aims at enhancing Arab-African cooperation through the financing of development projects throughout Africa.
Besides the loans given at low interest rates (1%), BADEA provides grants in order covering technical services and institutional supports in 43 non-Arab African countries.