Thilo: Contributing to road safety in West Africa

4 August, 2021

Africa has the biggest number of road traffic deaths in the world. According to the World Health Organization report, with 26.6 deaths per 100,000 people, the fatality rate is nearly three times that of Europe. Many of these accidents involve heavy trucks used for transportation - they are too old and do not comply with safety regulations.

Contributing to road safety and the development of sustainable logistics practices in West Africa, we have provided our first loan to Thilo Energie – a company involved in petroleum transportation in Mali. With our investment of EUR 800,000, the business will expand its operating capacity as well as improve its quality of services. Thilo Energie will use the loan to expand its fleet of new tanker trucks.

Compared to old models emitting loads of diesel exhaust, seven new Mercedes trucks are not only safer but will also reduce the negative environmental impact. "Given that the transportation sector has such a dreadful safety record in West Africa, investing in Thilo Energie seemed like an excellent opportunity for us to catalyze positive change. We saw a chance to make the petroleum logistics safer and better for the environment", comments Brenda Pennell, Senior Investment Manager at Cordaid Investment Management.

Furthermore, Thilo Energie makes a significant contribution to creating employment in Mali, producing at least one job per EUR 28,500 invested. Investments in companies like Thilo Energie, strengthen the formal labour market in Mali, where 95% of the labour force has informal jobs that are often unreliable. "Thilo Energie company is owned by a 27-year-old entrepreneur who has a policy of training youth drivers, giving them valuable skills they can use throughout their careers. And we are proud to be the first international lender to the company that gives youth decent formal employment and bright prospects for the future," adds Brenda. Over 60% of the population in Mali is under 25 years old, and every year 300 000 young people enter the labour market. Therefore, creating job opportunities for youth has a considerable impact on social and economic development in the country.


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