The railway connection that gives the West African states of Upper Volta, Mali and Niger access to the port of Abidjan, is being extended and improved with the help of a 833 million Central African Francs (GBP1,460,000) grant from the European Investment Bank.
GV & SV Containers being unloaded at dock
GV & SV Lorries being loaded with maize (6 shots)
GV R.A.N. building
MV Goods depot with freight trucks
MV Engine being coupled to freight truck
MV Passenger train PAN TO GV Station
Initials ES. 1800 ESP/1734
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Background: The railway connection that gives the West African states of Upper Volta, Mali and Niger access to the port of Abidjan, is being extended and improved with the help of a 833 million Central African Francs (GBP1,460,000) grant from the European Investment Bank.
The grant, which was announced in December of last year, is to be used to improve the railway's rolling-stock. The line is owned by the Abidjan-Niger Railway Company (R.A.N.). In addition it has recently been announced that the line is to be extended north from Ouagadougou, the capital of Upper Volta, to the town of Tambao -- the centre of the Liptako-Gourma mabanese mining project. The railroad will be used to transport manages direct from Toambao to the port of Abidjan.
The 1147 kilometres (712 miles) of railroad have proved to be an important factor in the development of the countries of the region and the extension of the line is aimed at helping Upper Volta.
Land-locked Upper Volta has always been the Ivory Coast's source of labour. Labour for the plantations of Ivory Coast and later for the light industry of Abidjan has traditionally come from Upper Volta. It has been estimated that since independence 800,000 temporary and permanent immigrants have left Upper Volta for its two neighbours, Ivory Coast and Ghana. But if the drift of labour from Upper Volta has significantly contributed to the Ivory Coast's rapid growth, Upper Volta has, for its part, paid the price of almost total stagnation.
It is hoped now that the development of the R.A.N. rail link will stimulate the economy of Upper Volta. For R.A.N. is now concentrating its development on the freight rather than passenger link between the two countries, giving produce for Upper Volta access to the sea and the more profitable markets of Europe and America.
In the ten year period 1971-80 under a planned investment programme, the railway is to receive GBP23 million Central African France (GBP1.28 million) of domestic funds for the modernisation off the freight services, hopefully stimulating trade not only between Upper Volta and the Ivory Coast, but with the rest of the world as well.