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Tunis, 23 August 2006 – The Government of Togo will receive US$ 3.75 million from the African Development Fund (ADF), the concessional window of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group to finance its capacity building support project and an Avian Flu control programme following the signing of two grant protocols at the Bank on Wednesday in Tunis.
The grant protocols for UA 2.2 million, equivalent to US$ 3.25 million, for the Institutional Capacity Building Project in the Ministry of Economy, Finance and Privatisation and US$ 500,000 to finance a National Bird Flu Control Programme, were signed by the Bank Group’s Vice President, Mandla Sizwe Gantsho, and Togo’s Minister of the Economy, Finance and Privatisation, Mr. Payadowa Boukpessi and certified by the Bank Group’s Secretary-General, Modibo Toure.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mr. Gantsho described the capacity building project as one of the thrusts of the Bank’s strategy to contribute in creating the enabling conditions for enhanced dialogue with the government in concert with other partners with a view to resuming Bank operations in Togo.
"Its core achievements will contribute to the implementation of the staff-monitored program currently in the finalization stage as well as your Government’s future programme with the Bretton Woods Institutions and other development partners", he emphasized.
He added that the emergency assistance aims at minimizing and possibly checking the risk of the virus spreading, protect the national bird economy and preserve the health of the population. In this regard, the assistance will be used to procure equipment and the required medication as well as carry out public awareness campaigns.
"It is our fervent hope that these two operations will set the stage for dialogue and consultations leading to the settlement of outstanding arrears. Furthermore, their entry into force and implementation within schedule will help to speed up the impact of the Bank’s assistance program in Togo, which aims at poverty eradication and development," Mr. Gantsho said.
In his comment, Mr. Payadowa Boukpessi, said that with the two grant protocols, the Bank Group has once again demonstrated that Togo could count on the institution in its fight against poverty on one hand, and in the modernisation of its administration, on the other hand.
He said that the political situation in the country had improved considerably following an agreement reached by the various political actors on 20 August to end the decade-long socio-economic crises in the country under the mediation of President Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso.
The agreement, he said, would enable the country to renew ties with the international finance community and to benefit from the Highly Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPCs).
The ADB Group operations in Togo commenced in 1972. To date, its commitments in the country, excluding cancellations, stand at US$ 265.60 million in 28 operations.
* UA 1 = USD 1.48386 = CFA 762. 393 as at 23/08/2006