Kinshasa-Brazzaville bridge: an economic danger threatens the ports of Matadi, Boma and Banana


The project has a lot of saliva flowing. The official announcement of the launch of the Kinshasa-Brazzaville bridge on the Congo River, for August 2020, sparked debates in the two capitals, separated by four kilometers.

The project to build a road linking the two capitals, the closest in the world, is the headlines lately, leading to a debate between pro and alter on social networks. Congolese are divided on the feasibility of this project, which most describe as untimely.

For some sophisticated analysts, this project is economically useless for the Democratic Republic of Congo, because the big profit would be drawn on the other side of the river. A significant flow of goods to the DRC would escape the seaports of Kongo Central. Because the importers will have more profit by unloading their goods by Black Point – which offers a customs tariff advantageous – for routing them in Kinshasa, via this road.

The DRC does not have, until now, a deep water port to allow the docking of cargo ships, will see all its cargo unloaded at Pointe Noire, before reaching easily and without much difficulty the Congolese capital by said road. The current scheme Europe or Central Asia-Pointe-Kongo via Pointe Noire will now belong to the past.

While the President of the Republic, Felix Antoine Tshisekedi, has launched the field of mobilization of capital, internally and internationally, to bail out the coffers of the state and operate at an exponential speed. modernization process of the DRC, this project passes, in the eyes of many observers, as a political action, better cosmetic only contributing to the embellishment of the Congo River, between the two cities.

This is not at all a priority for the DRC because, at this stage, they continue, the country must aim at profitable infrastructure in place of purely aesthetic architectural works.

Second provider of fiscal and budgetary revenues, after ex. Katanga, more than two years ago, Central Kongo province is today the first economic lung of the country, after the bursting of the copper province, thanks to the revenues generated at the international ports of Matadi, Boma and Banana . The Kinshasa-Brazzaville road project, which begins construction in August 2020, is likely to jeopardize not only the future of the province but, in turn, cripple the economy of the entire country.

Faced with a certain opinion that the Congolese state must momentarily suspend this project, some propose solutions to prevent this danger that lurks the country and benefit this project to the DRC in the same way as his neighbor opposite .

To believe these analysts, this must necessarily go through the acceleration of the construction work of the deepwater port of Banana, whose work was launched in early 2018, on the one hand, so that imports to the DRC do not transit through Pointe-Noire. On the other hand, the new executive must think about lowering its tariffs, which no longer reflect the reality of new paradigms of the global economic market.

And beyond that, what future for state-owned companies like the SCTP, the OCC, the DGDA and all its other services that operate and derive their resources and other levies of imports and exports at these seaports? Thousands of jobs are at risk of being cut, as the resorption of unemployment is high on the agenda.

In short, enormous challenges remain upstream to give credit to this project to a part of the population still skeptical. It is after having realized these challenges, believe hard like iron, these same observers, that the road Kinshasa-Brazzaville will be able to serve common measure the two capitals the closest of the world, by ensuring the fluidity of the commercial exchanges, but also the circulation fast and secure people and their belongings.


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