Beitbridge border post gets SA bank loans for revamp

By Roxanne Henderson and Ray Ndlovu

(Bloomberg) – Lenders including Standard Bank Group and FirstRand provided $130m (R1.8bn) of loans for an upgrade of Southern Africa’s busiest border crossing.

The financing for the Beitbridge border between South Africa and Zimbabwe includes the $130m commercial debt tranche arranged by FirstRand’s Rand Merchant Bank unit, Standard Bank, Absa Group and Nedbank Group, according to an article paid for by RMB and published by Johannesburg-based website BusinessLive. It also includes a $65m development-finance institution tranche from Afreximbank and the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund.

Zimbabwe’s finance minister, Mthuli Ncube, tweeted that the funding showed investors’ confidence in his country’s economic prospects. A group of private-equity firms with a concession to operate the border post has said it will invest $300m on the upgrade.

Read also: Zimbabwe’s Beitbridge border post gets investment boost from Harith

The Beitbridge crossing was closed for most traffic last month to stop the spread of the Coronavirus. On average about 25,000 people pass through Beitbridge daily, according to Zimbabwean officials.

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