The Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) will help fund a 300km rail network for Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Africa’s second most populous city after Cairo.
The project will be jointly developed with Trans Connexion Congo (TCC), a company set up to carry out the project.
The work will be undertaken in four stages, the first of which will modernise the existing system that runs for 25km between Kinshasa’s central station and the N’Djili International Airport.
The AFC is making an initial $3m investment towards the pre-construction process, with the aim of reaching financial close before the end of this year.
Kinshasa’s rapid growth has outstripped its infrastructure to the point that its transport system meets less than half of the population’s needs, AFC said.
Amadu Wadda, a senior director of the AFC, said the aim was to “rapidly industrialise” Kinshasa through its rail system.
TCC managing director Erick Onepunga Yongo said modernising transit in Kinshasa was in line with the vision of Congolese President Felix Antoine Tshisekedi, and had the support of the Central Coordination Office.
The AFC is a funding organisation set up by African states in 2007. Its previous schemes included the $365m Henri Konan Bedie Bridge in Cote D’Ivoire and the $160m Bakwena Toll Road in South Africa.