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Central Africa calls for raising of road fund

The Economic and Monetary Community of Central Afric a (CEMAC) and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) were Frid a y urged to set up a regional road fund in Central Africa.

The fund would serve to mobilise necessary financing for road maintenance, which only amounts to 25 to 40 per cent of public regional investments, according to p articipants at a forum on transport and logistics, which ended in the Congolese c apital.

The meeting, which was organised by the Central African States Development Bank (BDEAC), in partnership with the Francophone Business Forum (FFA) and the Intern a tional Organisation for Migration (IOM), was attended by delegates from ECCAS an d CEMAC member states and from the international organisations.

The funding raised to date, an estimated 25 per cent, devoted to the achievement of 55 foreground projects listed in the consensual master plan of Central Afric a ‘s Transports (PDCT-AC), which forecasts the building of some facilities and cor r idors meant to ease congestion in the region.

For the BDEAC President Anicet-Georges Dologuele, the figure of 25 per cent coul d be justified when the projects were introduced to the PDCT-AC, some of them ha d already found a beginning of funding.

As for the remaining projects, the financing will be settled at the conclusion o f the donor’s roundtable, explained Dologuele during a press conference at the e n d of the workshop.

The participants at the meeting recommended the conducting of a referendum on th e ways and means to improve the receipt collection system and the identification

of new funding sources, the improvement of transit and transport facilitation me c hanisms, as well as the setting up of a guarantee fund for regional transit.

They also recommended to renovate platforms and port’s equipments, enhance capac ities of water routes’ central controls, revive the study on the hydroelectric a n d minimum flow support dam on the Palambo site, in the Central African Republic ( RCA), to strengthen the public-private partnership in order to solve urban trans p ort problems within the states, carry out studies in the framework of the region a l Fund of the economic partnership agreement (FORAPE) of the European Union (EU)

so as to improve security and safety levels within the regional transport network.

In Central Africa, transport facilities (river, air, maritime, road and rail) ar e in outdated state.

Road transport predominates over the region where trades in air, maritime and ri ver routes are not developed enough; the non-interconnected river networks and t h e less dynamic coastal shipping, despite the presence of deep water ports within

the region.

The reinforcement of the competitiveness of means of communication will help acc elerate the regional integration process in Central Africa.

The Congolese Transport and Civil Aeronautics Minister, Emile Ouosso reaffirmed the political will of the region’s countries to develop the transport sector bef o re calling on the donors to get down to it.

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