Improving the Growth Impact of Rural Transport Activities in Sub-Saharan Africa
Outline of presentation
·        Context of and approach to the study
·        Policy and institutional context for RT in SSA
·        Study process
·        Lessons from the reviews and good practice examples
·        Essential building blocks of a framework for provision of RT
·        Next steps
·        Selected features of RT in SSA

Approach to the review of rural accessibility and agriculture in SSA
·        A desk study
·        Identify lessons from past project reviews, sector programs & analytical work
·        Identify good practice from outside SSA
·        Document recent implementation experiences & outcomes within SSA
·        Develop an updated framework of good practice for country level & Bank and Donor partner audience

Context: WDR08 & other recent agriculture sector studies conclude…
·        Getting agriculture moving requires improved access to markets, more efficient & responsive marketing chains – rural transport improvements are essential
·        But transport is but one of a number of pre & post farm activities (e.g. storage, processing) that add value to farm production & are essential to agricultural transformation …and rural development
·        Other factors include… complementary investments in economic and social sectors; policy and local institutional capacity
·        Other factors:  complementary investments e.g other types of infrastructure; policy & institutional framework, and
·        local institutional ability to plan, implement, maintain infrastructure.

Selected features of RT in SSA
·        Low population density (although higher in areas of agricultural potential)
·        Community roads, tracks, paths are largest portion of the national network
·        As trunk roads have improved, lowest tiers are emerging as biggest constraint to market access and rural mobility
·        Technical and institutional requirements for local investments are different from those for higher level roads – investments are smaller per km, technologies simpler, but often challenging
Bullet 4 (last bullet):  examples of local area technologies: gravel vs. paved; IMT vs. motorized vehicles

Improving RT faces constraints in SSA
·        While overall transport investments have increased, rural transport is still underfunded; many lack access to the improved trunk road networks
·        Rural transport sustainability remains a challenge:
§  Gravel roads are often most appropriate but deteriorate quickly & need frequent maintenance:  What is the correct choice of technology and standards? 
§  Government financing sources are limited & responsibilities may lie at multiple levels:  Who finances?
§  Many local stakeholders exist in decentralizing environments w/ unclear roles:  Who owns and manages?

Policy & institutional context for RT has evolved since 1980s
·        Agricultural reforms have changed spatial patterns of production & trade (transport is a derived demand)
·        Decentralization and CDD have moved institutional focus of planning, implementation & maintenance of local infrastructure downward to beneficiaries
·        Donors & governments are shifting to program support for sectors: requires coherent policy, budget dialogue/devolved financing
Could add something on NEPAD/CAADP’s ambitious growth plans, and how they and donors are also trying to deal with the regional infrastructure tier

Lessons from the review: sustainability is the biggest challenge and has many facets
Policy and Institutional sustainability requires:
·        Integrating agriculture/rural & transport sectors in sector strategy & investment cycle
·        Putting community at center of process; requires community participation, capacity
·        Ensuring that rural accessibility can be introduced into non-transport sector activities
·        Central focus should be assuring maintenance of RT infrastructure and the associated services
Bullet 1 sources: Rural Roads in SA (1991), IEG Review, RT A Review of 15 Years, Roads Are Not Enough. Additional comment: Investment cycle (for donors as well as government) includes investment planning, identification, preparation & appraisal, financing, implementation, and maintenance.
Bullet 2 sources: (Transport and the Village; Improving Rural Mobility).  Additional comment: local capacity building requires give TA & training from eight to ten years to build local government and community instits, as well as local private contractors, engineers.
Additional comment:  some reviews also see need for establishment of rural roads units in roads agency w/ autonomy & funding.

Lessons from sector programs, analytical work
·        Good road is necessary but not sufficient for assuring good rural transport, agricultural and rural growth
·        Rural transport starts from the village household, and drives rural development that emerges in context of local area institutions; focus needs to shift from “roads provision” to investing also in agriculture/rural development allowing RT to facilitate growth
·        Other sectors are essential to the growth process
·        RT needs usually different from the higher levels of the road network – testing, learning and sharing needed

Common themes from good practice outside SSA: Peru, Vietnam, Bangladesh
All cases show:
·         Importance of preparing a good policy & strategy
·         Need to engage for the long term for maximum results
·        The feasibility of achieving results through integration of multi-sector components
·        Flexibility, innovation needed in local institutions
·        Peru: shows promise of bringing rural infrastructure into public expenditure process (dedicated Rural Infrastructure window)
·        These reflect much of the recommendations of the RTTP for SSA

SSA good practice: Ethiopian Rural Travel & Transport Program results
·        Well organized local planning; in pilot “weredas” (LG) constructed and maintained roads substantially reduced travel time, increased market activity, farm & local market agricultural prices
·        Mobility in rural areas increased with new bus, transport services, IMTs (mainly animal carts)
·        Increased agricultural production, marketed output, new products; reductions in local price of mfd. goods
·        Labor-based methods successfully used, achieved good construction standard; popular & sustainable

Challenge:  Resources for expansion to all weredas

Background: Rural Travel and Transport Strategy (1998), following multi-sector development approach; In 2002 began to implement pilot projects in eight different regions (pilot is ongoing)
Bullet 1 comment:  reductions due to  due to the opening up of routes to the passage of motorized transport and the switch of transport mode from back loading or animal transport to motorized means.
Bullet 2 comment: IMTs aided by micro-credit under the ERTTP pilot project

Essential building blocks of an RT framework (1)
·        Set objective for access & mobility that supports rural & agricultural development
·        Define clear (macro, sectoral) policy that facilitates pro-poor growth, rural development, decentralization & local empowerment to enable access provision
·        Achieving impact requires scaling up so there is a need to establish consensus & create ownership for an agreed national policy and  strategic framework
·        Ensure participation and input from multiple sectors (transport, agriculture, other infrastructure) at national, regional & local level through institutions for planning, budgeting, & implementation

Bullet 3 requires inter alia consensus on a national policy
Sustainability of interventions require ownership (national/local), relevance and affordability and appropriate institutional framework)

Essential building blocks of an RT framework (2)
·        Design & implement RT interventions to help catalyze specific elements of rural growth: agricultural marketing access; small-farm commercialization, reduced price risk, increased non-farm investment, social infrastructure, etc.
·        Monitor & plan for scale-up of successful pilots (identify costs, capacity needs, training for scale-up)
·        Define road network, ownership, management roles, design standards & financing arrangements

What is needed at country level? (1)
·        Set of firm institutional arrangements at national, regional & local levels for policy and strategy formulation, planning and programming , management and implementation;
·        Participation of multiple sectors including transport in ag. and rural growth planning and policy at national level
·        Inclusion of rural transport/infrastructure as an element of both transport and agricultural/rural sector strategy (national-level) & national budget process (a la Peru)
·        Tools for national and local planning that help establish link between RT interventions and specific rural growth elements (agricultural marketing; commercialization, price stability, non-farm investment, social infrastructure, etc.)

What is needed at country level? (2)
·        Simple tools for localities:
o   Local network assessment and prioritization
o   Menu of technical options (road designs, IMT). Are good gravels being depleted? Do we have alternative affordable designs?
o   Tools to cost options over the life-cycle
o   Cost-benefit analysis methods
·        Methods to scale-up successful pilots (reduce costs, identify capacity & training needs – possibly test with demonstration project)
·        Road classification exercise to define road network, ownership, management roles, design standards & financing arrangements

What is needed from the World Bank/donors?
·        Multisectoral GIS-type analysis of infrastructure & productive activities, as entry point for joint evaluation of growth opportunities; input to Country Assistance Strategies, PRSP
·        Intersectoral collaboration requires learning over time, long-term institutional support. Options for WB and partners are:
o   @ sector-level: (1) new dedicated multisectoral RT/RI unit; or (2) RT/RI unit established within SD comprised of ag/rural & transport specialists. Disseminate knowledge cross-country.
o   @ country-level: Country-based SLs given responsibility, budget, incentives to form and manage intersectoral teams piloting sustainable rural infrastructure operations/analysis.

Next Steps
·        Development of a checklist of operational tools needed to apply the framework (November 2009)
·        Peer review of the draft report (December 2009)
·        Finalization of the report (January 2010)
·        Publication and dissemination of the report (February 2010)
·        Piloting (subject to funding) of the application of the framework in target countries (during 2010)
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