Saudi loan transforms Banjul airport into regional hub


Gambia signs financial package with Saudi Arabia on Wednesday (today)

from MOMODOU DIBBA in Banjul, Gambia
BANJUL, (CAJ News) A LOAN agreement the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) has signed with The Gambia will culminate in improved facilities, jobs increasing to over 1 000 and the number of passengers increase by 43 percent to 400 000 at the Banjul International Airport.

The loan will finance the second phase of a development project at the airport in the capital city.

Banjul is set to become a West African regional air transport hub following the expansion.

The increase in capacity will allow five different airlines to be handled every three hours.

Overall, the modernisation and upgrading exercise is expected to contribute to the overall growth of The Gambia’s national gross domestic product (GDP) thus impacting directly or indirectly on the lives of the country’s population of 2 million.

The Gambia’s President, Adama Barrow, attended the signing ceremony, accompanied by Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Mambury Njie, and the Minister of Transport, Bai Lamin Ousman Jobe.

SFD, which is one of the largest development and sustainable assistance providers, was represented by its Adviser, Eng. Yousef Al-Bassam, Director of the Legal, Abdulmohsen Almutlaq, and Faisal Alkhushaiban, Director of Public Relations.

The SFD’s loan agreement is part of its ongoing effort to enhance economic stability and prosperity in The Gambia.

It has previously provided loans totaling US$169 million for 12 projects in the areas of economic development, education, transportation and water.

The SFD has also provided five grants worth $43,5 million towards projects in the water and energy sectors.

Eng. Al-Bassam said the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, represented by the SFD is pleased to be able to offer assistance to help develop the economy in The Gambia.

“An airport meeting international standards is vital for the growth of trade, tourism, investments, air transport, logistics and maintaining worldwide links and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) by the United Nations (UN),” he said.

Aligned with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 roadmap to enhance economic and social stability in those countries which need it, SFD has since 1975 played a vital role by providing loans and financial assistance to more than 1 000 projects in developing nations.

– CAJ News

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