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SEME-KRAKE Joint Border Post between Benin and Nigeria now operational

Press Release


Sèmè-Kraké, 24 October 2018




Benin’s Head of State, Patrice Talon, and his Nigerian counterpart, the Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Muhammadu Buhari, inaugurated the Sèmè-Kraké Joint Border Post (JBP) on Tuesday 23 October 2018, at the border between the two countries.

The inauguration and handover ceremony was attended by Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, ECOWAS Commission President, Commissioners Pathé Gueye (Infrastructure) and Francis Béhanzin (Political Affairs, Peace and Security), Ketil Karlsen, Head of the EU Delegation to Nigeria, alongside several political and administrative authorities from Benin and Nigeria.

According to Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, the Sèmè-Kraké border post is of utmost importance to ECOWAS Member States, and especially to regional integration.

“The border post will facilitate and boost trade between ECOWAS Member States,” intimated the Commission President of the regional organisation.

Supporting the statement, the EU representative Ketil Karlsen noted that his institution shares ECOWAS’ values of integration.

For their part, Presidents Patrice Talon and Muhammadu Buhari indicated the border post would bring together border officials from their respective countries and would be an important milestone towards free movement in the ECOWAS region.

“This will make life a little easier for our citizens and other travellers shuttling between the two countries. Our police administrations will cooperate closely to ensure our safety. Our customs administrations will be more effective in carrying out their duties. Bringing our border agencies together and interconnecting them will improve their performance and facilitate the movement of persons and goods,” stated Patrice Talon.

This view was fully shared by his Nigerian counterpart, Muhammadu Buhari, who invited the border agencies from both countries to make good use of the facility.

At a cost of €18,286,622.92, representing approximately CFAF 12 billion, the Sèmè-Kraké Joint Border Post was funded through the support of the European Union under the Regional Transport Facilitation Programme.


Located at about thirty kilometres from Cotonou, the economic capital of Benin, the border post is expected to facilitate formalities at the border between Benin and Nigeria in accordance with the regional protocol on free movement of persons and goods, which is the pillar of regional integration.


The JBP is of strategic importance and is located on the Abidjan-Lagos corridor, which accounts for 70% of all transit trade in the sub-region. The corridor is also an integral part of the trans-African road network.


The 25-hectare Sèmè-Kraké JBP has areas for passenger and vehicle transport, handling and freight (customs), transit and livestock inspections.


It is an ultra-modern facility which comprises several buildings, particularly administrative blocks, customs brigade, truck inspection area, shops, toilets, weighbridge, a control room via scanner, place of prayer, health post, room for maintenance and storage of generators. The construction of the Sèmè-Kraké Joint Border Post alongside its enabling infrastructure is, on the one hand, a flagship project for ECOWAS and, on the other hand, a good example of a regional public asset with many benefits, notably for the sensitisation of border users between Benin and Nigeria on the fight against harassment, extortion and bad practices along the corridor.


 The Community embarked on the construction Joint Border Posts to ensure better trade facilitation through a one-stop customs clearance activities in order to achieve economies of scale, simplify customs procedures, improve cooperation and coordinate controls, encourage the sharing of data and intelligence, and step up the fight against fraud.  It is worth noting that the ECOWAS Commissioner for Infrastructure, Pathé Gueye, along with his predecessors Ebrima Njie and Célestin Talaki were also present at the ceremony.


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