African countries are gradually building infrastructure to integrate the continent. Botswana and Zambia earlier constructed a 923 meters long bridge which is strategically positioned at a point where Namibia, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana intersect. This drastically improved the trade infrastructure of the entire Southern African Development Community (SADC).
Latest on the list of efforts towards integration is the 1.5 Km double-lane border bridge jointly built by the Nigerian and Cameroonian government to facilitate trade activities between the two countries and also add to the trade infrastructure of West Africa. Funding for the project which was reported by Nigeria media as $35.9 billion was provided by both countries on mutual grounds.
Nigeria’s Minister for Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola who paid a working visit to the site stated how this project will help both countries to plug into the newly introduced African Continental Free Trade Agreement.
“Nigeria is now a signatory to the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement so this is an infrastructure that positions both nations to take the benefit of the trade that agreement holds.” The minister told reporters.
According to him, the project will also strengthen the already existing relationship between the two countries and also help boost trade activities.
“We have had a strong relationship with the Republic of Cameroon in terms of trade and business. If you go to Aba, Enugu, and Abakaliki for example, I can tell you that they are on the route that facilitates trade in agro-produce, merchandise, and manufactured goods”. He said.
The minister further added that, the facility will help in terms of security measures. “You can only expect that this will improve joint border patrol, ensure security, more efficiency which you see from the first buildings formed out of the integration of ECOWAS and sister nations of what the continent should look like,” Fashola said.
The construction of the bridge by the two West African countries started from April 28, 2017, and was fully completed in March 2021.