E&S Due Diligence in Niger for a leading European DFI

A division of a large African Holdings Company is developing a 140 room four-star hotel in central Niamey, Niger to serve the expanding accommodation demand, especially for business travelers.  A leading European-based Development Financial Institution (DFI) had been approached for project financing. To ensure project compliance with International Finance Corporation Performance Standards (IFC PS), World Bank Environment Health and Safety Guidelines, and local regulations, IBIS was appointed to undertake an Environmental and Social (E&S) Due Diligence study.  The E&S Due Diligence included a review of the project design, construction and operational phases.

Within a short turnaround time, IBIS deployed a French-speaking E&S Due Diligence specialist with strong experience in construction safety, hotel operations, security and green building design. The approach was structured to address the challenges of the local context in Niger, and to cover all phases of the project, with the unique environmental and social risks associated with each phase.

Key focus areas included hotel building environmental performance (using the IFC Green Building EDGE tool), safety during construction and the hotel’s E&S Management System. The assessment also included a full review of the hotel’s security measures (access control, alarms, emergency procedures, etc.) against the international best practices in the context of increased terrorists attack targeting hotels in West Africa.  IBIS also identified potential E&S opportunities, such as job creation, tax revenue and setting up local environmental standards.

IBIS provided a detailed, practical and prioritized corrective action plan to address all gaps identified in the assessment.  This enabled the DFI to make informed decisions and incorporate E&S requirements into the financing agreement. The construction of the hotel building is currently underway, and should be open for business by mid-2018.

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