Limited access to transport, communications, water and energy is a major obstacle to economic growth in Africa. The World Bank estimates that to make good its delay where infrastructures are concerned, Africa will need 93 billion dollars annually, twice the amount which is currently available. (2009 World Bank report Africa's Infrastructure: A Time for Transformation).
This serious deficit of infrastructures is a challenge which the European Union and Africa have committed to address together, in particular by means of the Partnership for African Infrastructure. The key instrument of this partnership, the EU-Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund, created jointly by the European Commission, the member states of the EU and the European Investment Bank (EIB), has been operational since 2007. The African Development Bank (AfDB) and the African Union Commission are vital partners in this initiative.