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Tunis 22 August 2006 – The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group and the Central African Republic (CAR) on Monday in Tunis signed a UA 3.3 million grant agreement, equivalent to US$4.9 million, to finance a project for the rehabilitation of economic planning capacity in the Central African Republic.
The agreement was signed by the Bank Group’s Vice President, Mandla Sizwe Gantsho, and CAR’s Minister of the Economy, Planning and International Cooperation, Sylvain Maliko, in the presence of the Bank Group’s Secretary-General, Modibo Toure.
In his comment, Mr. Gantsho said the agreement was the Bank’s reengagement with the Central African Republic after several years, adding that it would contribute to the country’s efforts to consolidate progress with regard to reforms that are paving the way for the reengagement of the international community with the country.
"I wish to stress the importance that the ADB attaches to the rebuilding of your country and I hail the efforts and significant progress achieved by your Government over the past few months, in the economic, political, security and social spheres," he said, adding that the Bank’s team and that of the World Bank had embarked on a joint working scheme which had translated into a "Road Map" that sets forth a number of activities conducive to the full re-engagement of development partners with country.
Mr. Maliko, for his part, said the country was honored by the support which he described as the logical consequence of President François Bozize’s recent visit to the Bank’s Temporary Relocation Agency in Tunis where he held discussions with Bank Group President, Donald Kaberuka.
"We are opening a new page in our relations with the ADB. We are starting a decisive phase in our relations," he emphasized.
The objective of the project, financed by the African Development Fund (ADF), the concessional window of the ADB Group, is to strengthen the capacity of Government services in macro-economic and sectoral planning, monitor poverty reduction strategies, debt management, preparation of national accounts and collection of social data. These activities seek to rehabilitate the country’s development planning.
The overall project cost is estimated at UA 3.66 million, equivalent to US$5.43 million. The ADF grant will cover 90% of the project. The government will provide the remaining 10%.
The ADB Group operations in the Central African Republic started 1972. To date, its commitments in the country stand at US$180.49 million in 26 operations.
* 1 UA = USD 1.48386 as at 22/08/2006
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