The Senegalese National Assembly has ratified the agreement establishing the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group regional office in Dakar, Senegal.

The regional office covers the activities of the AfDB and the African Development Fund (ADF) in Senegal, Mauritania, Gambia and Cape Verde.

“The choice of Dakar to host the regional office is justified by the portfolio of the country, the possibility of realising new loan transactions in favour of the public sector, the potential for the development of the private sector, the accessibility of Senegal, the institutional capacities and, finally, the perspectives for the promotion of regional integration,” explains Omar Kabbaj, president of the AfDB Group, when signing the agreement in Tunis on April 20, 2004.

The opening of the regional office will enable the bank group to reinforce its presence in the four countries in conformity with its strategic plan that places emphasis on the improvement of dialogue with the member countries, strengthening coordination with financial backers, consolidation of relations with sub-regional and regional organisations and improved performance in the implementation of projects.

Since October 10, 1972, date of its first intervention in Senegal, through November 2004, the net commitments of AfDB Group in Senegal, including loans and grants, amount to 556mn Units of Account (CFA421bn or US$854mn) in 60 operations in the following key social and economic development sectors: rural development, transport, social development and private sector.

Within the framework of its decentralisation policy, the AfDB Group will have 25 representation offices in Africa at the end of 2006. In addition to its offices already operational in Gabon, Egypt, Ethiopia and Nigeria, the AfDB Group reinforced its network during 2004 with three new offices: Tanzania, Uganda and Senegal.