Sustainable and effective transportation is one of the major foundations that enable a state to progress in its economic endeavours. Without a solid, functioning transportation network, the transit of people and goods is difficult to achieve, and without established security measures, even harder to maintain.
In order to facilitate the social well-being of West African states and their citizens, securing waterways, ports and intermodal connections must be properly established, with safe, secure operations taking place on a day-to-day basis. This could mean further implementation of manned security, or alternatively, more robust access control measures and resilient perimeter protection around anchorage sites.
Ports are recognised as a catalyst through which social and economic development can be achieved and which provide a means for generating enterprise, so it is a feasible proposition to prioritise this area first.
Growing concern about instability, population pressure and chronic food insecurity in the region, combined with growing awareness of the potential of enhanced intraregional trade and investment to contribute to sustainable and inclusive economic development, has led to a number of European donors increasing their efforts to encourage West Africa in its pursuits. Aid, trade and investment are three focus points for Dutch businesses in particular, which have been quick to recognise investment and trade opportunities.
While trade flows have increased substantially within the last several years, obstacles to further expansion include poor road infrastructure, administrative barriers and difficulties risks of transferring funds between countries.