Turkish firm invests in Ivorian urban water transport

A Turkish industrial group has invested $40 million in the urban water-transport sector in Abidjan.

A Turkish industrial group has invested $40 million in the urban water-transport sector in Abidjan.

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast - A Turkish industrial group has invested $40 million in the urban water-transport sector in Abidjan, the Ivory Coast's commercial hub, breaking a monopoly by state-owned transport company Sotra.

"The arrival of this new company will make life easier for Ivoirians who travel from the south to the north of the city every day in hectic conditions," Soumahoro Manssa Ben N'faly, president of the Ivory Coast Consumer Union, told Anadolu Agency on Thursday.

Turkish group Yildirim has recently launched a transport company, Rainbow Line, in Abidjan.

Group managing director Yuksel Yildirim, who took part in a Wednesday launch ceremony, said $40 million had been invested in the company.

Yildirim said his group, which plans to open its regional office in Abidjan, was interested in pursuing energy and maritime port projects in the Ivory Coast's southwestern city of San Pedro.

Rainbow Line, which will begin operating in April with a fleet of 45 commuter boats, is the first company authorized by the Ivorian government to compete with Sotra for urban water transport.

According to N'faly, the Turkish company will offer travel options and competitive fares to Abidjan's roughly six million people, including some two and a half million commuters who move from one end of the city to the other each day for work and school.

"We expect Rainbow Line buses to be more modern and well equipped and to offer cheaper and on-time services," he told AA.

Yildirim is one of the leading industrial groups in Turkey, boasting more than 6,000 employees on 5 continents.

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