Burkina Faso Approves $150 Million Loan for Digital Transformation

By : Samira Njoya

Date : mercredi, 12 juin 2024 13:33

Digital transformation is a key focus of the development initiatives launched by the Burkinabé government. Ouagadougou aims to rely on World Bank assistance to successfully implement its digital strategy.

Burkina Faso is poised for a significant leap forward in its digital transformation journey. The Transitional Legislative Assembly (ALT) on Tuesday, June 11th, approved a $150 million loan from the World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) to fund the Digital Transformation Acceleration Project (PACTDIGITAL).

This ambitious project aims to bridge the digital divide in Burkina Faso by improving accessibility and adoption of digital services nationwide. The focus will be on reaching underserved areas, particularly rural communities, and marginalized groups.

"PACTDIGITAL will directly benefit a wide range of individuals," explained Minister of Digital Transition, Posts, and Electronic Communications, Aminata Zerbo/Sabane. "This includes women, youth, people with disabilities, internally displaced persons, and their host communities. Additionally, public employees - civil servants, teachers, and trainers - will gain valuable digital skills. The project also extends to private companies, formal and informal training institutions, local incubators, and associations. Notably, PACTDIGITAL covers the entire country, with security considerations factored in."

Building upon the successes of the West Africa Regional Communications Infrastructure Project (WARCIP - BF) and the e-Burkina project, PACTDIGITAL will serve as a springboard for further digital initiatives in Burkina Faso. The IDA funding is a critical step towards closing the country's significant digital divide. Official figures show a low mobile connectivity index of 26.2 in 2018. Additionally, 3G and 4G mobile network coverage rates remain low compared to neighboring countries, sitting at 64.3% and 41.5% respectively in 2022.

Samira Njoya


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