INTRODUCTION: The President of the Ivory Coast, Felix Houphouet-Boigny, officially opened a large new thermal power station in Abidjan, the capital, on Monday (4 April).
INTRODUCTION: The President of the Ivory Coast, Felix Houphouet-Boigny, officially opened a large new thermal power station in Abidjan, the capital, on Monday (4 April). The ceremony was part of the 25th anniversary celebrations of the national Ivorian electricity and energy company.
SYNOPSIS: The station, in Abidjan's industrial suburb of Vridi, cost about 50 million (U.S.) dollars, and was partly financed by Italy, France, Canada and the United States. It's powered by oil, and combines some of the most up-to-date technology available. Increasing emphasis is being given to electric power generation in the Ivory Coast. Several dams have already been constructed, and by 1980 it's planned to treble present electrical production. Two percent of the country's entire budget is invested in energy programmes.
Italy's Energy Minister, Carlo Donat Cattin, was present at the ceremony. An Italian company built the plant, and the project also is an example of the continuing co-operation between France and the Ivory Coast -- a former French colony.
France has played a leading role in the country's expansion. It's the Ivory Coast's main trading partner, and provides a large part of the foreign public investments. Since 1960, when the Ivory Coast gained its independence, the French government has given more than 560 million (U.S.) dollars in grants and loans. There are still more than 40,000 Frenchmen in the country -- 25,000 of them in Abidjan alone.