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Bessac Afrique starts operations in Senegal

As part of the Mamelles Desalination Plant project in Dakar, Bessac Afrique, through its new branch in Senegal, has been awarded the contract to build two 340-metre-long underwater outfalls.

Financed by the Senegalese government and Japan’s JICA to the tune of 200 million euros, this project involves the construction of a seawater desalination plant, the largest in West Africa, designed to treat 100,000 m3 per day.

In this context, Bessac Afrique is building two underwater outfalls using the microtunneling technique. These two tunnels, 340 m long and with an internal diameter of 1.60 m, will take in seawater and discharge the brine produced during the desalination process.

During this project, the microtunnel will be recovered twice at sea by barge from our partner SOMAGEC, which is responsible for installing and connecting the diffuser and the intake head to the microtunnels.

The microtunneler “MARIEME” was christened at the beginning of February and will start working in March 2023. The microtunneling technique means that the work can be carried out without impacting the environment. Mamelles beach is very popular with the people of Dakar, and the coastal area is heavily used by fishermen.

Improving access to water resources

The project therefore plays a crucial role in the seawater desalination process in Dakar and will help to improve the city’s supply network, diversify local water sources and boost supply capacity, thereby helping to improve the living environment of the region’s inhabitants.

With more than 70% of staff coming from local communities and benefiting from technical and HSE training provided by site management and external organizations, the project is generating a positive social impact in the surrounding area. The management team is made up of 7 different nationalities. In keeping with Bessac’s DNA, this project reflects the cultural diversity at the heart of its activity.


This project, in a new country for Bessac Afrique, is an opportunity to promote, in Senegal, the microtunneling technique, which is still little known in West Africa, as was the case in Côte d’Ivoire.

The technical nature of the methods, the training of local personnel in a new country and a very tight schedule to respect the favorable seasons for maritime work are all challenges that Bessac Afrique will have to meet before the end of summer 2024.

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