Côte d'Ivoire - Country Commercial Guide
Selling to the Public Sector
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The Ivoirian government incorporates WAEMU directives into its public procurement bidding policy, processes, and auditing.  Recent changes include separating the auditing and regulating functions, transitioning from a national to the regional WAEMU procurement system at https://www.uemoa.int/ for intellectual services and increasing advance payment for the initial procurement of goods and services from 25 to 30 percent.

Côte d’Ivoire has signed Bilateral Investment Treaties (BITs) with the following countries and multilateral organizations:  Belgium, Canada, China, the European Union (EU), Germany, Ghana, Italy, Luxembourg, Mauritius, the Netherlands, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.  The Ivoirian government ratified the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the EU in September 2016, allowing it to access the European market with no tax.  The EPA went into effect in December 2019. 

Côte d’Ivoire does not have a bilateral taxation treaty with the United States, though it has tax treaties with Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, and Switzerland.  For leasing, the depreciation period of the item for accounting purposes is aligned with the period of the contract and not the lifespan of the item.  The government has made a special tax incentive available to foreign investors to be able to import equipment needed for a project.  

Selling to the Government

The National Regulatory Authority for Public Procurement (Autorité Nationale de Régulation des Marchés Publics, ANRMP) regulates public procurement with a view to improving governance and transparency.  It has the authority to sanction private entities and individuals that do not comply with public procurement regulations. 

For projects financed by multilateral lending institutions, such as the World Bank and the African Development Bank, BNETD usually acts as an executing agency representing the ministry involved.  There is a charge for the bid documents, which are normally in French.  Government payments are centralized through the Banque Nationale d’Investissement (BNI), which acts as the government’s bank.

U.S. companies bidding on government tenders may also qualify for U.S. government advocacy.  A unit of the U.S. Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration, the Advocacy Center, coordinates U.S. government interagency advocacy efforts on behalf of U.S. exporters bidding on public-sector contracts with foreign governments and government agencies.  The Advocacy Center works closely with our network of the U.S. Commercial Service worldwide and inter-agency partners to ensure that exporters of U.S. products and services have the best possible chance of winning government contracts.  Advocacy assistance can take many forms but often involves the U.S. Embassy or other U.S. government agencies expressing support for the U.S. bidders directly to the foreign government.  Consult Advocacy for Foreign Government Contracts for additional information.                 

Financing Projects

Commercial lenders tend to rely more on collateral than on prospective income and cash flow.  Financing is generally available for short-term (one-year or less) private sector projects.  Banks continue, however, to extend credit only to a limited group of borrowers—mostly large companies—that are deemed good credit risks.  Medium- to long-term infrastructure projects, even private-sector projects, are often financed by foreign assistance programs, rather than by commercial banks.

Multilateral lending institutions, such as the World Bank, the African Development Bank, and the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, provide corporate finance and project finance solutions including loans, lines of credit, guarantees, and risk management products.  

U.S. Export-Import Bank (EXIM Bank) financing is available for short- and medium-term private sector transactions.  EXIM Bank’s Direct Loan Program offers foreign buyers medium- and long-term loans for up to 85 percent of the contract price at fixed interest rates for the purchase of U.S. capital equipment.  In November 2022, EXIM Bank signed a $500 million MOU with Côte d’Ivoire, demonstrating both countries commitment to strengthening two-way-trade.  Financing also may be available through the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation and U.S. Trade Development Agency, depending on the structure and ownership of the project.

Multilateral Development Banks and Financing Government Sales

Price, payment terms, and financing can be a significant factor in winning a government contract.  Many governments finance public works projects through borrowing from the Multilateral Development Banks (MDB).  A helpful guide for working with the MDBs is the Guide to Doing Business with the Multilateral Development Banks (PDF).  The U.S. Department of Commerce’s (USDOC) International Trade Administration (ITA) has a Foreign Commercial Service Officer stationed at each of the five different Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs): the African Development Bank (based in Abidjan); the Asian Development Bank; the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; the Inter-American Development Bank; and the World Bank.

Learn more by contacting the:

The U.S. Commercial Service’s Commercial Liaison Office to the African Development Bank is in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.  See the Commercial Services’ African Development Bank resources and contact telephone: + 225 05 54 001 241. 

For additional information on the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights, visit the U.S.  Investment Climate Statement website.