Côte d’Ivoire government seeks AfDB’s support for US$5.8bn tourism plan

sea 3876727 640Ivorian Minister of Tourism Siandou Fofana has presented a strategy document to the African Development Bank (AfDB) aimed at making Côte d’Ivoire Africa’s fifth biggest tourism destination from 2025

The document entitled “Sublime Côte d’Ivoire,” was presented to the bank’s Vice-President responsible for Private sector, Infrastructure and Industrialisation, Pierre Guislain.

“One of these is the ‘Abidjan Business City,’ which will be a central point for holding conventions in Côte d’Ivoire. We do not currently have a conference centre and we do not have a hall with the capacity to accommodate 5,000 people. There is, therefore, a need to move quickly in that regard,” he said.

“We will also have a ‘beautiful beach for all,’ with a 550km coastline that has yet to be exploited. In addition, we will build a 100 ha leisure park to be a place of entertainment for the sub-region, and develop press trips and seven flagship tourist areas,” Fofana added.

Projects envisaged under the strategy include strengthening of the tourism code, establishing additional tourist attractions with a land reserve of 6,000 ha, the creation of a bank of tourism-sector projects and redesigning of a tourism ‘one-stop shop.’

The government plans to strengthen security and health care, develop the aviation sector and increase airport passenger flow to three million, and train and certify 230,000 sector professionals.

“All this will drive employment and our intention is to create 375,000 new jobs. From 2025, we plan to welcome four to five million tourists to make this sector the fourth economic pillar of the country and to make Côte d’Ivoire the fifth biggest tourism power on the continent and the joint leader in African business tourism,” commented Fofana.

He briefed the delegation on the bank's financing instruments for the public and private sectors, highlighting the existence of private investment funds and the Bank's priority focus on supporting bankable projects for partners with sufficient financial capacity.

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