Benin

AFD has been operating in Benin since 1956 and mainly works to improve access to essential services. We are the leading donor for secondary and vocational education and joint leader in the energy sector. AFD, a longstanding partner, is assisting the country towards sustainable growth. It also supports the reduction of poverty and inequalities and the conservation of the environment.
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education, development, Benin
AFD AND BENIN: Towards sustainable growth
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Promoting high-quality education and access to training

education, training, , development, Benin

Promoting high-quality education and access to training

Benin has a young and rapidly growing population. Access to high-quality education and employment is still one of the main challenges facing the country.

AFD is consequently involved in:

  • The construction of school infrastructure (1,000 classrooms built)
  • Teacher training
  • The retention of girls in school (20,000 beneficiaries)
  • The teaching of scientific subjects
  • The development of a high-quality vocational training provision concerning job-creating sectors.

Developing sustainable agriculture

agriculture, , development, Benin

Developing sustainable agriculture

Agriculture is a key sector for Benin’s economy: it employs over 50% of the population and accounts for some 20% of the country’s GDP. AFD supports the development of sustainable and fair agriculture in order to ensure the food security of people. Our action consequently aims to:

  • Organize sectors and improve the competitiveness and productivity of farms (mainly family farms)
  • Promote innovative and environmentally-friendly agriculture
  • Combat malnutrition in rural areas
  • Strengthen the management of natural resources and land resources
  • Promote a greater involvement of women and young people.

Increasing access to electricity

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Increasing access to electricity

Only 40% of Benin’s population (including less than 8% in rural areas) has access to electricity. AFD earmarks almost half of its commitments in Benin to combat this energy divide, while promoting the country’s energy transition

Our projects aim to:

  • Promote renewable energies. For example, we have financed the construction of one of the largest photovoltaic power plants in West Africa
  • Upgrade and extend the distribution grid: access to electricity for over 850,000 people
  • Improve the performance of the national electricity company.

Promoting sustainable and resilient urbanization

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Promoting sustainable and resilient urbanization

The country’s population growth raises new urban and environmental challenges. At the same time, Benin is one of the countries most exposed to climate change.

AFD promotes inclusive and sustainable urban development, based on resilient cities that take into account the need for adaptation to climate change. The “Porto-Novo, Green City” project and the adaptation of cities to climate change program are emblematic examples of this.

More generally, AFD integrates climate and environmental issues into all its operations, i.e. some 50% of the amounts committed in Benin since 2014.

Facilitating SME financing and supporting innovation

rice growers, development, Benin

Facilitating SME financing and supporting innovation

AFD Group mobilizes all its financial tools (grants, ARIZ and EURIZ guarantees, credit lines) for Benin’s public or private actors. The aim is to facilitate access to financing for microenterprises and SMEs, support the productive sector and “green” investments and create an environment conducive to the development of the private sector.

AFD also supports the digital transition (infrastructure, e-services, civic tech) and innovative entrepreneurs.

25
ongoing projects
440
million euros committed since 2013
60,000
children enrolled in school, including 20,000 girls

Benin, a West African country bordered by Togo, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Niger, has a 121 km-long coast on the Gulf of Guinea. It has a population of 10 million, 40% of which lives below the poverty line.

This is because Benin is still one of the least developed countries in Africa despite its political stability and numerous assets. Its agricultural and tourism resources are plentiful, its population is young and its geographical position – close to large markets (Nigeria, as well as its own growing population) – makes it a key centre of transit and one of the countries with the most potential in the region.

But Benin is still too dependent on informal transit trade to neighbouring Nigeria (20% of its GDP) and on agricultural production (25%). It is struggling to meet the needs of its ever-growing population and to provide its private sector with a favourable business climate. The Beninese government needs to overcome the challenges of access to electricity, education and healthcare as well as balanced and sustainable development of its territory.

Benin is one of the priority countries for French aid. As a long-standing partner, AFD has made the country's national challenges a priority. We work alongside public and private actors through loans, donations, guarantees and technical assistance. From 2013, we committed more than €440m to Benin.

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Africa | Benin

Benin: A Renaissance in Child Healthcare

Each year in Benin, 1,500 women die during childbirth and over 12,000 new-born children die within 28 days following their birth. A maternal and child health support programme is now combating this silent tragedy affecting families and hindering the country’s demographic dynamics.
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