2 July 2008 – The World Bank approved an International Development Association (IDA) credit of US$7 million to strengthen and expand activities of the Energy Services Delivery Project (ESDP) in Benin.

The additional amount approved will be used to conduct the following specific studies and activities:

Engineering studies: (i) Feasibility study of the Maria Gléta site, which is expected to serve as the site for the establishment of the West African Power Pool (WAPP) regional project; and (ii) Preliminary studies for the Adjarala hydroelectric project.

Extension of transmission and distribution systems: (i) Rehabilitation of the Benin Distribution Power Utility (SBEE) thermal substation in Akpakpa; (ii) Upgrade of the SBEE distribution network; (iii) Installation of protective equipment at the Benin/Togo Generation and Transmission Power Company (CEB) substations in order to facilitate operation of the loop transmission system in the South of Benin; and (iv) Provision of cable heads to link the Djougou and Parakou stations;

Funding of the environmental audit of the Sèmè oil field; and

Technical assistance with SBEE financial management and capacity building.

"Using this additional financing, the World Bank intends to contribute, along with the Government, to providing the people of Benin with reliable and affordable energy services, which are key to economic growth in Benin,” said Senior Energy Economist and Team Leader at the World Bank for the ESDP, Ms. Fanny Missfeldt-Ringius.

The Energy Services Delivery Project was launched in 2005 with the objective of expanding access by the people of Benin in urban, peri-urban, and rural areas to modern energy services. Initial financing for the first project amounted to US$45 million (World Bank), US$12 million (Nordic Development Fund), and US$8 million (African Development Bank).  The project is being implemented by the SBEE, CEB, and the General Energy Directorate.