ADF, ECCAS sign grant agreement : institutional support project of the general secretariat of the ECCAS

17/01/2004
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The ADB Vice-President for Central and West operations, Mr. Bisi Ogunjobi and the ECCAS General Secretary, Louis Sylvain-Goma signed in Tunis a grant agreement of 2.59 million Units of Account (UA*), equivalent to 3.88 million US dollars to finance an institutional support project of the general secretariat of the ECCAS.

The ADF grant will be used to revitalise and build the Secretariat’s ability to act in matter of economic integration and regional cooperation, through restructuring and implementation of its work programme.

The project is expected to give fresh momentum to regional integration and cooperation in the areas of human integration, physical, economic, social and monetary integration, implementation of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) and the development of the capacity for analysis and multilateral trade negotiations.

The Project components are:

- Support to the restructuring of the ECCAS General Secretariat through the design and implementation of an organization chart adapted to its missions;

- Support for the implementation of the activity programme of the ECCAS Secretariat, technical assistance, vocational training, and necessary equipments provision.

The program of priority activities of the ECCAS will be composed of the Communitarian infrastructures projects implementation in the NEPAD framework, the Free trade area achievement, the effective implementation of the communitarian integration contributions, from the Cooperation Funds and finally the Computer-based library and accountability system development.

VP Ogunjobi congratulated the sub-region representative for its important progresses, particularly in the field of governance. Nevertheless, the Vice President recalled that regular payment of their financial contributions from the member countries to the Community is necessary to ECCAS viability. Mr. Ogunjobi also underlined that the ADB Group was preparing a regional strategy in order to foresee global implementations in the region.

Mr. Louis Sylvain-Goma mentioned that the Community was one of the NEPAD programme’s focus of and that it is playing a role as a stabilizing factor in the region. However, he added that the ADF grant would enable to the General Secretariat to become operational and then technically and financially supporting the Integration and Cooperation area’s projects and initiatives

The ECCAS was established in 1983 within the framework of the implementation of the Lagos Plan of Action adopted in 1980, the General Secretariat became operational in 1985.

The member countries of the sub-regional body are: Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Rwanda, Sao-Tome & Principe and Chad.

*1 UA =1.55301 $US as at 01/01/2005

Media contact:

Sabrina Hadjadj Aoul– Tel: +216 71 10 36 98 – E-mail: s.hadjadjaoul@afdb.org