The Mali Government has signed $11bn agreements with China to support two major railway projects, which will connect the country to the coast.
Signed during the World Economic Forum in Tianjin, China, Reuters reported that the agreements are likely to boost the country’s economy and help deliver better services.
China Railway Engineering Corporation (CREC) head Dai Hegen said: "The construction project of the railway is crucial for landlocked countries such as Mali, which will seaboard through the port of Conakry."
The first planned project worth $8bn is for a 900km-long railway link from Mali’s capital Bamako to Guinea’s port capital Conakry.
The other $1.4bn project will involve renovation of Bamako-Dakar railway to connect Mali to the Senegalese capital to the west.
According to the Mali Government, these $11bn agreements include $51m in gifts and interest-free loans from China.
Agreements for projects, including the construction of a fourth bridge across the Niger River in Bamako and planned housing, energy, road and education projects, were also signed.