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DRC: Cooperation with AfDB targets projects worth US $ 1.4 billion

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The country portfolio of the African Development Bank (ADB) is currently US $ 1.4 billion. It was reviewed with satisfaction during the stay in Kinshasa of President Akinwumi Adesina. Relevant projects are those underpinning the five pillars of the AfDB program that also fit into the DRC government’s priorities.

Finance Minister Henri Yav Mulang discussed the key to allocating this amount of the country portfolio across several sectors. This, before thanking, on behalf of the government, the management of the ADB for all the allowances that are granted to the DRC by this institution in the framework of the partnership.

« To date, this co-operation is characterized by a USD 1.4 billion portfolio, spread over several sectors, namely: (i) transport infrastructure (30%), (ii) energy ( 26%), (iii) water-sanitation (12%), (iv) agriculture (12%), (v) social (8%), (vi) governance (7%), (vii) industry and mining (4%) %) and (viii) finance (1%), « he said.

High 5 of the ADB in the DRC
Thus, the first pillar of the AfDB’s « enlighten Africa » ​​program contains 7 projects in the DRC for a total amount of USD 486 million.

The second pillar, which is « feed Africa », has 5 projects in the DRC in the agricultural sector for an amount of 160 million USD.

These first two pillars prepare and support the near completion of the third pillar projects, which is « industrializing Africa ».

As for the fourth pillar, « integrating Africa », chosen as a theme in the last annual meetings organized in Malabo, it informs 7 projects for a total amount of 480 million USD.

« The geostrategic position of our country, in the center of the continent, with 9 neighboring countries, gives it undeniable assets to play the leading roles in the integration of Africa, from North to South and from East to West. » Said Henri Yav.

Finally, the fifth pillar, namely « to improve the living conditions of Africa », not only that it is the natural consequence of achieving the first four pillars, but also the major projects in the field of electricity, as INGA 3 and in the drinking water service, contribute to its realization.

Advocacy of the DRC
However, the attention of the AfDB President was drawn to the need, in view of the extent of cooperation between his institution and the DRC, to strengthen the staffing of AfDB staff at the resident mission.

Henri Yav insisted: « We think it would be appropriate to complete the National Office with the following key positions: (i) Country Manager, (ii) Energy Task Manager, (iii) Task Manager in Agriculture and (iv) Governance Task Manager. This would be timely, as part of the AfDB’s decentralization policy.  »

Moreover, the DRC intends resolutely to capitalize the political progress and the economic gains of these last years to impel, with the collaboration of its bi and multilateral partners, such as the ADB, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, a sustainable revival of its economy.

« The Government of our country is pleased that these projects are in line with the Country Strategy Paper, extended until 2020, pending the finalization of its National Strategic Development Plan (PNSD), on which will be able to rest the constitution of the 15th ADF. « Concluded the Minister of Finance.

As a reminder, the cooperation between the ADB and the RDC dates back to 1973. Since then, projects in the DRC have been evaluated at a total amount of US $ 6.4 billion.

Eric TSHIKUMA

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DRC: the « education » project will be submitted to the WB Board of Directors in February 2020

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DRC: Education project to be submitted to World Bank Board in February 2020

The Government’s emergency project on free « Basic Education » will be submitted to the World Bank’s Executive Board in February 2020. According to the Vice President for Africa, Hafez Ghanem, preparations are being intensified to ensure that this deadline is met.

« We are working very quickly on this education project. And we plan to bring this project to our Council as early as February. Regarding the height of the amount, we are in the process of making evaluations. It’s going to be a big amount, around a billion US dollars, » he told reporters at the end of his meeting with the Congolese delegation led by Finance Minister José Sele Yalaghuli.

Indeed, this emergency project is part of World Bank support for the Government’s efforts to provide free basic education, the implementation of which began last September.

To relieve the pressure on public finances to allocate at least US$25-37 million each month, the World Bank has pledged to support the Congolese Government in this regard.

https://twitter.com/Zoom_eco/status/1184909044315758593?s=20In line with the commitment of the Head of State, Felix Antoine Tshisekedi, and the President of the World Bank, David Malpass, the Minister of Finance, José Sele Yalaghuli, has clearly indicated the Congolese Government’s firm desire to see the process speed up so that funds are released within an acceptable time frame.

« This is the right time for the partners of DR Congo to match the real political will of the Congolese national executive to meet one of the aspects of the World Bank’s mandate, namely: the fight against poverty, » he said at a previous meeting with the World Bank delegation led by Jean-Christophe Carret.

With regard to the health coverage programme, Hafez Ghanem reiterated his institution’s commitment to continue working alongside the Democratic Republic of Congo, particularly in the fight against Ebola.

 

He added: « We will also work with the Government on a new health programme to strengthen basic health centres and improve access to health across the country. »

However, he gave no indication of the amount of funding for this health programme, especially since it is currently under study.

As a reminder, the delegations of DR Congo and the World Bank held a working meeting on Thursday 17 October 2019 in Washington DC. Experts from both sides, led by José Sele Yalaghuli and Hafez Ghanem respectively, reviewed ongoing projects within the World Bank portfolio and those under preparation.

In addition to education and health, projects related to infrastructure, connectivity (roads) and the digital economy were also discussed.

Eric TSHIKUMA, from Washington

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DRC: the three axes of the Accelerated Programme to Combat Poverty and Inequality

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DRC: the three axes of the Accelerated Programme to Combat Poverty and Inequality

The President of the Republic launched his Accelerated Programme to Combat Poverty and Inequality in Kinshasa on Wednesday 16 October at the site of my valley in the commune of Mongafula.

This Programme aims to ensure that twenty million Congolese living in rural and peri-urban areas in the 145 territories of our country leave poverty or extreme poverty within the next 5 years.

It has three components: improving rural and peri-urban populations’ access to basic socio-economic infrastructure and services; promoting rural and peri-urban economies; and building capacity in managing for development results at the national, provincial and local levels.

The first component aims to increase the population’s access to basic services such as housing, electricity through the promotion of micro hydroelectric power plants, drinking water, health and agricultural access roads. This list is not exhaustive.

The second component aims to ensure that people in villages and peri-urban neighbourhoods have improved and stable sources of income and that they consume at least one balanced meal per day. This component will place particular emphasis on promoting inclusive agricultural sectors.

The third component aims to develop a culture of autonomy, which will result in the appropriation of development by the beneficiary populations, the strengthening of self-esteem, meritocracy and a motivated attachment to their living environment.

Substantial resources for this ambitious program!

« The Programme, the main components of which I have just unveiled, requires ambitious funding over several years, » said Félix Tshisekedi, aware of these challenges. In the face of such an ambition, the Head of State asks the Government to spare no effort to explore all possible avenues likely to provide the means for this saving action for the people.

It is with this in mind that the last Council of Ministers adopted the hypothesis of a budget reaching the 10 billion mark.

In addition, Félix Tshisekedi intends to engage the country in far-reaching reforms ranging from the rebuilding of the state with justice as the epicentre to the sectors of national life.

This is how he makes his main focus the fight against anti-values, particularly corruption, embezzlement of public funds, tax fraud, smuggling and tribalism. And all means will be used to ensure that all State revenues are channelled into the Public Treasury.

Finally, to make this programme a success, the President of the Republic is counting on the involvement of all his compatriots, beyond the divisions.
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Harris Kasongo

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DRC: Economic and financial situation at the heart of a meeting at the World Bank

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DRC: Economic and financial situation at the heart of a meeting at the World Bank

The economic situation in DR Congo is the focus of a meeting on Thursday 17 October 2019 at the World Bank’s headquarters in Washington DC. The Minister of Finance, José Sele Yalaghuli, leads the delegation of Congolese experts.

In his presentation, the national silversmith described a macroeconomic framework for DR Congo that has remained stable.

Despite accumulated deficits of 420 billion Congolese francs at the end of September 2019, domestic prices and the exchange rate fluctuated slightly. And at this rate, the Government reports inflation of 4.2% at the end of December 2019, which is below the 7% end of period forecast level.

Referring to the strategic and political orientations of the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Minister Sele Yalaghuli cited in particular the tightening of public spending in order to limit deficits and the subscription of treasury bonds with the ambition of mobilizing 150 billion CDF by the end of 2019 to fill the gaps.

The first results are promising, especially since a small monthly budget surplus was recorded at the end of September 2019.

Moreover, added Sele Yalaghuli, the third orientation concerns the Government’s firm commitment to pursue the implementation of reforms with the support of partners to remove obstacles sector by sector and to be able to remedy them.

With regard to cooperation between the Congo DR and the Bretton Woods institutions. After the break-up of the formal programme with the IMF in 2012, the ongoing recovery strategy of the current discussions is based on two options.

First, the interim program. Then, the formal program. If the first one will cover the preparation period of the second one, the conclusion of the formal programme could take place after the third quarter of 2020.

« This is the right time for the partners of DR Congo to match the real political will of the Congolese national executive to meet one of the aspects of the World Bank’s mandate, namely: the fight against poverty, » José Sele Yalaghuli said, addressing the World Bank delegation led by Jean-Christophe Carret.

With the World Bank, experts from DR Congo are working on preparations and options to initiate disbursement of funds for the Government’s priority sectors on are: basic education and universal health coverage.

This interaction with World Bank teams continued, with Hafez Ghanem, Vice President in charge of the Africa region, as the focus.

Eric TSHIKUMA, from Washington DC

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