AfDB has been active in Morocco for more than 50 years, funding development projects and providing technical assistance.
Rabat – The African Development Bank (AfDB) has offered to continue to work to help Morocco in its journey to modernize its railways sector.
The company seeks to contribute to improve the mobility of populations and logistical competitiveness through its financing and technical assistance.
The AfDB secured €300 million for the National Railways Office (ONCF) to finance the project that is meant to increase the capacity of the Tangier-Marrakech railways line, the bank said in a press release.
The funding also facilitated an increase in the number of railways, modernized signaling, built many structures such as the latest Casa Port train station, and constructed the central signaling control post.
In addition to financing the projects, the AfDB is also set to provide technical support throughout the completion process. Expressing satisfaction with the African bank’s support, ONCF Director General Mohamed Rabie Khlie said “the ADB is a historical partner.”
He said the bank has been supporting Morocco’s railway development since the 1990s.
The bank’s teams also provided technical support to the ONCF.
Speaking of the project, Khlie emphasized that the railway office is focusing on increasing the mobility of Moroccans.
The office also seeks to double or even triple the number of passengers using its network.
“The network has experienced a revolution over the past ten years,” Ahmed Bouhaltit, ONCF’s director of engineering, told state media MAP.
The network’s revolution is reflected through three projects, including the high-speed rail line, he argued.
The development of the freight transport offer has encouraged the emergence of new industrial centers. By equipping itself with modern rail infrastructure, Morocco has attracted many investors, especially in the automotive sector.
Souhail Tantaoui, an official at “Flux Aval,” a Moroccan subsidiary of the French manufacturer PSA, told MAP: “The rail network is, for us, very important.”
Explaining that two trains carry 280 vehicles each, Tantaoui emphasized that the modernization of Morocco’s railway network will allow Flux Aval to unload its daily production to the port of Tangier Med to export it to Europe and across the world.
AfDB has been active in Morocco for more than 50 years.
The bank also has had 170 operations, which mobilized more than $10 billion.
Leila Farah Mokaddem, the resident representative of the AfDB in Morocco, stressed the bank’s contribution to development efforts across Morocco.
The continental bank’s support has enabled the North African country to provide access to drinking water and sanitation to over 3.5 million people, while 8.5 million, including four million women, have benefited from better health services.