British International Investment

Africa Gateway


This investment was made when British International Investment was named CDC Group.

Our investment

Description of the investment.

Our partnership will help address the stark imbalance in global trade through supporting the modernisation and expansion of ports and inland logistics across Africa, starting in the ports of Dakar (Senegal), Sokhna (Egypt) and Berbera (Somaliland). The platform covers a long-term investment period. British International Investment is committing approximately $320 million initially and expects to invest up to a further $400 million over the next several years.

Impact information

Applies to investments made from 2019 onwards. The tabs in this section define what we expect to achieve through the investment, assessing the potential impact of the investment against six dimensions of impact. You can find more details on our methodology of assessing impact here.


  • Creation of economic opportunities (SDG 8.5) through the development of improved critical infrastructure.
  • Improved quality of life through increased access and affordability of goods (SDG 9.1).


  • Economic enabler: Increase trade capacity and efficiency to increase throughput and reduce end-to-end logistics costs for containerised and non-containerised cargo, thus increasing competitiveness of exported goods; and increasing productivity for firms relying on imported inputs, so leading to GDP growth and job creation.

  • Economic enabler: Increase trade capacity and efficiency to increase the availability and affordability of imported goods, thus improving quality of life for consumers.


Stakeholder Geography Characteristics
Employees and suppliers

Egypt, Senegal and Somaliland

Suppliers to and employees of exporting firms. Employees of firms relying on imported inputs.

How much?

Scale Depth/Duration

We expect that trade enabled through the three initial ports will improve access to vital goods for 35 million people, support 5 million jobs (138,000 created), and add $51 billion to total trade by 2035

We expect impact to be deeper for stakeholders exporting perishable agricultural goods as these will be positively affected by time/efficiency improvements and tend to employ low-income groups. Stakeholders in industries relying heavily on imported manufactured inputs will also benefit disproportionately from efficiency/time and direct cost savings.

Grid score

Grid Score

To help us direct our investments, we previously used a tool called the Development Impact Grid. It scored investments out of four, based on two factors: the difficulty of investing in a country and the propensity of the sector to generate employment. This tool was used for investments until the end of 2021. Since 2022 it has been replaced by the Impact Score.



Alignment Risk
  • Relates to the risk that partners do not want to pursue follow on assets in Africa and/or do not want to pursue deals in particularly hard places. We are confident that DP World want to do more in Africa.
Execution Risk
  • Relates to the risk that, even with desire to do more in Africa, the joint venture could take considerable time to secure new projects which BII can invest in. This risk will need to be tolerated given the uncertainty of infrastructure development in Africa.
Unexpected Risk
  • Relates to risk stemming from better access to imported goods which can reduce the competitiveness of domestically produced goods relative. This risk will need to be tolerated/is a trade policy decision by the country government.

Environmental and social information

  • Environmental and social summary

    A high-level description of the environmental and social aspects of the investment. This may include a summary of key environmental and social risks identified during environmental and social due diligence (ESDD); key elements of an environmental and social action plan (ESAP); or ways in which we plan to support the investee improve environmental and social standards, such as through their environmental and social management system (ESMS); as well as any other priority areas agreed with the investee.

  • Environmental and social risk

    A risk category rating, which indicates the level of environmental and social risk associated with an investment. For an explanation of the categorisations used, see here. We consistently provide an environmental and social risk category for all investments screened from 2023 onwards.

Environmental and social summary

We agreed an environmental and social (E&S) action plan focused on updates their approach to occupational health and safety, environmental monitoring and biodiversity management.

Reporting and Complaints Mechanism

The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism allows anyone outside BII to report alleged breaches of the business integrity or environmental and social provisions of BII’s Policy on Responsible Investing. This includes breaches made by BII, a BII investee, or a portfolio company of a fund in which BII has invested. The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism Rules are available here. Reports and complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by mail. See more details on our Reporting and Complaints Mechanism here.

For any other general enquiries contact us at [email protected]

  • Key facts

    Last updated

    When the last quarterly update of the website database occurred.

    January 2024
    Project number

    An identifier number shared by investments in the same project.


    The current status of the investment (green flag for active and red flag for exited).


    The geographical region where the country is located. We currently invest in Africa, South Asia, South East Asia and the Caribbean. In 2023, BII’s investment mandate was extended allowing it to invest in regional funds linked to Ukraine, with the majority of activity expected to begin post-war. Investments outside these regions were made prior to 2012 under previous investment mandates.


    The countries from which we derive the value of our investment. Where value is derived from multiple countries, this is indicated.

    Egypt, Senegal, Somaliland

    We prioritise those sectors that facilitate development and need our capital the most. Our priority sectors contribute towards many of the Sustainable Development Goals. They range from investing in the power infrastructure that will provide people with better access to electricity, to investing in financial institutions that direct capital to the individuals and businesses that need it the most.


    We provide capital in the following ways: directly – through direct equity, direct debt, guarantees and other non-intermediated financial instruments; and indirectly – principally through investment funds.

    For direct investments and fund investments, this is the date BII committed capital to the investments. This is typically the date on which legal agreements are signed by all parties.

    For the portfolio companies of our fund investments, this is the date (either the month or the quarter) on which the fund committed capital to the portfolio company.

    For direct equity investments, this is the date at which British International Investment exited the investment.

    For debt investments, this is the date at which the final debt repayment was made.

    For funds, this is the date at which the fund was terminated.

    For underlying fund investments, this is the date at which the fund manager exited the investment.

    The total amount committed, per financial instrument, per investment, on the date BII becomes subject to a binding legal obligation to provide funding or assume a contingent liability. This information is provided in US dollars.

    For direct investments, this is the amount that BII has committed to the business or project. For fund investments, this is the amount BII has committed to the fund.

    The currency in which the investment was made.

    Investment type :
    Start date :
    December 2021
    Amount :
    Currency of investment :

    The company or investment fund’s place of incorporation.

    United Kingdom

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