Liberia has secured a €19.6m ($27.3m) loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to upgrade the runway and address safety at the country’s main airport in the capital city of Monrovia.
Given to the country for a 20-year period, the loan was agreed on the sidelines of the World Bank IMF meetings in Washington, US. The Saudi Fund for Development and the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa will be co-financing the project.
The runway project will include improvements to runway drainage and runway lighting, which will allow the Robert International Airport to comply with international civil aviation standards.
Liberia’s Finance Minister Amara Konneh said: "The European Investment Bank has always been a true partner to the people of Liberia. The airport rehabilitation project is another clear manifestation of that partnership."
EIB vice-president Pim van Ballekom said: "The European Investment Bank stands side by side with Liberia at this time of need.
"We will continue our engagement with Liberian officials, partner institutions and European Union Delegations in the region and will ensure that any support we can provide will be of best use. Upgrading Monrovia’s airport is essential for Liberia and we are pleased to share experience from similar projects elsewhere in Africa."
The EIB has supported airport investment around the world and has provided €12.5bn for new airports and airport upgrades in the last decade, which includes runway improvements in Maputo, upgrading regional airports in Tanzania, air traffic control in Madagascar and West Africa, as well as Heathrow Terminal 5, Amsterdam Schiphol and airports in Frankfurt and Paris.