The project includes civil works for the proposed road/rail bridge, two one-stop border facilities, access roads and ramps across the Zambezi River. It is expected to significantly relieve ferry services and increase trade between the two countries. Construction began in 2014 and is due to be completed in 2018.
The total project cost of around US$ 260 million was funded through a co-financing arrangement with JICA. The Bank covered 34%. The balance was shared between JICA (58%), Governments of Zambia and Botswana (6%) and EU-AITF Grant (2%).
For years, ferries were used to cross the river. It took transporters more than 8 days at times to navigate, impacting negatively on trade. The AfDB has played a crucial role in making this key bridge construction happen, financing feasibility and design work, supporting institutional capacity at SADC Secretariat for its project management, co-financing with JICA the construction work, mobilising additional resources for trade facilitation component.