The World Bank has granted $266.5 million in funding to support the acceleration of digitalization across the MSGBC region.
Financial support will be channeled through the implementation of the Digital Transformation for Africa/West Africa Regional Digital Integration Program (DTfA/WARDIP), an initiative designed to enhance infrastructure development, foster ICT skills and expand the regional digital market.
The aim is to provide 1.3 million consumers with access to modern, reliable and affordable digital services through collaborative efforts involving the African Union (AU), non-profit organization Smart Africa, and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
“DTfA/WARDIP is a crucial step toward an interconnected, innovative and inclusive future for West Africa. Beyond shaping a digital landscape, it aims to foster regional integration through collaboration and strategic investments,” said Boutheina Guermazi, World Bank Director for Regional Integration for Africa and the Middle East.
The World Bank funding will also address gender gaps in digital skills and facilitate policies that enable a regional digital market. The approval of the funding comes at a time when West Africa faces low adoption of broadband and digital services, with rates below 40% due to infrastructure deficits and high associated costs. The program aligns with the AU’s strategic vision of creating single digital markets by 2030.