The UK government is guaranteeing loans worth £43.8M taken out by Ghana’s finance ministry to expand an airport in the north of the country.
The guarantee has been provided by UK Export Finance, a government credit agency which works with closely with the Department for International Trade.
Ghana’s finance ministry will use the money to back funding for QG Construction UK’s contract to deliver the expansion project. The work involves building a new international terminal building, access roads and ancillary facilities.
The ancillary facilities include landside and airside infrastructure and a wastewater treatment plant as well as waste management facilities. A 1,000m² facility for Muslims making the annual Hajj pilgrimage will also be built.
Tamale Airport’s facilities are used by civilians and Ghana’s military, although the airport was first established solely for military operations. The new terminal and ancillary facilities will be exclusively used for civilian operations, while the military will use the existing facilities. The airport runway will be shared by military and civilian aircraft.
Expanding Tamale Airport will “increase tourism and to boost socio-economic development by improving connections to the north of Ghana,” according to UK Export Finance.
“It will also benefit Hajj pilgrims with the new multipurpose facility serving as a terminal building during the Hajj season,” the credit agency added.
International trade secretary Liam Fox predicted the funding would have a “dramatic impact” on transport in Ghana.
He added: This is just one example of the work we are doing as part of the government’s export strategy, an ambitious plan to grow exports to 35% of UK GDP.”
News of the loan being provided to expand Tamale Airport has come less than a year after UK Export Finance provided the Ugandan government £250M in loan guarantees for construction of an airport in the western region of the country.
Earlier this month, UK Export Finance also provided Darlington-based firm Cleveland Bridge with £49M in export credit guarantees to construct 250 modular bridges for rural Sri Lankan communities.
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