High-level advocacy mission to the republic of Côte d’Ivoire for the support of the ECOWAS fund for the development and financing of the transport and energy sectors (ECOWAS-FODETE)
Abidjan, COTE D’IVOIRE 21-22 February 2023
1. At the 36th Summit of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government in Abuja in 2009, the establishment of a Fund for the Development and Financing of the Transport and Energy Sectors (FODETE) was approved. The Fund will be fed from a levy on revenues generated from key commodities in the region and possibly from other viable sources. A feasibility study was conducted in 2016 with the participation of all ECOWAS Member States.
2. ECOWAS presented the FODETE study to the 30th session of the ECOWAS Administrative and Finance Committee (AFC) in November 2016 in order to obtain approval from ECOWAS statutory bodies. However, the AFC requested an extensive consultation with sector experts and ministers. A consultative meeting on FODETE was therefore organised in Lomé in November 2019 to present FODETE to the heads of ECOWAS country offices. National consultations were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic but were eventually organised by ECOWAS country offices in 2021.
3. A regional consultative meeting was held in Dakar in March 2022 to present the results of the national consultations and to reach a consensus, particularly on the collection rates. The key recommendations of the regional consultation concern the updating of the macroeconomic and financial component of the FODETE study and the conduct by ECOWAS of an advocacy mission to the four highest contributors to FODETE (Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, and Senegal) before the submission of the project to the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government.
4. Following the recommendations, the ECOWAS Commission organised a high-level advocacy mission to the Government of Côte d’Ivoire on 21 and 22 February 2023. The mission was led by Mr Sediko Douka, ECOWAS Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy and Digitalisation.
5. The objective of the mission was to sensitise key ministers in Côte d’Ivoire on the FODETE dossier, to demonstrate the benefits of FODETE in terms of sustainable infrastructure financing, to exchange views on the FODETE implementation schedule, to provide information on the upcoming data collection missions for the update of the FODETE dossier in May 2023, as well as to present FODETE to the ECOWAS statutory bodies in December 2023.
6. The mission was facilitated by the ECOWAS national office in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and Diaspora. The mission held working sessions with the Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum as well as with officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and the Diaspora, the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Ministry of Budget and State Portfolio, the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
7. At the sessions, Mr Sediko Douka, ECOWAS Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy, Mines, Water Resources, Digitalisation and Postal Services, thanked his counterparts, recalled the background and objective of the mission, and solicited the support of Côte d’Ivoire to make FODETE a reality. He also stressed that ECOWAS, in addition to its political aspect, is working hard on the economic front through its achievements in the energy, transport and agriculture sectors, to name but a few. He illustrated these achievements with concrete examples, such as the infrastructure projects under preparation (Abidjan-Lagos), the joint checkpoints that have been built, as well as WAPP’s energy achievements.
8. Mr Douka stated that the FODETE macro-economic study will be updated in the coming months and requested the availability of the various technical departments to help the consultant collect data. He concluded by showing the importance of Côte d’Ivoire’s support for the approval of FODETE at the statutory bodies.
9. The Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum of Côte d’Ivoire and other officials met reiterated the support of the Government of Côte d’Ivoire for FODETE. They pledged to work closely with ECOWAS to finalise the FODETE dossier for presentation to the ECOWAS statutory bodies in December 2023.