Zim to benefit from AfDB’s action plan

Source: Zim to benefit from AfDB’s action plan | Sunday News (Business)

Judith Phiri, Business Reporter
ZIMBABWE is set to benefit from the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Sustainable Urban Development Action Plan (SUDAP) -Under Development expected in 2022 which seeks to foster development and improve service delivery in towns and cities.

Speaking during the Zimbabwe Infrastructure Investment Summit 2021 held last week, AfDB executive director Dr Judith Kateera said the financial institution was developing an action plan for the Urban Development which will be launched next year.

“Under Urban Development Strategy, the bank’s vision for urban development in Africa is to make African cities and towns healthy environments for citizens to live and work; competitive and bankable with a strong development base; and well governed. Zimbabwe is set to benefit from the Sustainable Urban Development Action Plan (SUDAP)–

Under Development expected in 2022 and prepared under the Bank’s Urban and Municipal Development Framework (UMDF),” she said.

Dr Kateera said there were loans available for countries with relaxed conditionalities to develop cities and creating healthy environments for citizens. Zimbabwe urban local authorities have been found wanting in service delivery which prompted Government to avail funds to these councils to provide clean water to citizens.

Government has also availed emergence road rehabilitation funds for the upgrading and maintenance of urban roads that had been neglected by urban local authorities.

She said the bank would also be assisting with strategic planning of cities.

“The bank will be advising cities on energy, environment and climate change issues, formulating Smart City Proposals and implementation of action plans. The bank will assist in preparing Climate Resilience Plans and Strategies including promotion to low carbon growth,” she said.

Dr Kateera said the bank will also assist in conducting Policy Research and Analysis.

“We will help in policy, regulatory and institutional analysis for mainstreaming sustainability in urban planning and governance and preparing policy mainstreaming roadmaps as well as regulatory and legal frameworks for efficient service delivery.

“The bank will be providing sustainable solutions for Urban Infrastructure Services through policy and regulatory research to promote sustainable and resilient urban infrastructure services. It will also be conducting technical and financial feasibility studies, technology applications and preparing investment strategies and implement action plans.”

She said that the Bank will assist in knowledge and capacity building through data management frameworks and systems to support sustainable city planning; developing and delivering training programmes for Urban Local Bodies, urban practitioners and policymakers.

Dr Kateera said the AfDB will be offering financial support through traditional project loans and grants.

“Especially transport, power supply and public lighting, water supply and sanitation project in major cities, private sector instruments (loans, guarantees and equity) to support private investments and explore public-private partnership models,” she added.

She said that the Bank will be offering credit lines and credit support, guarantee facilities and offering policy-based lending including budget support – support of fiscal, administrative and political decentralisation undertaken as part of public sector reform.

In line with Zimbabwe’s National Development Strategy and Vision 2030 of a prosperous and empowered Upper Middle-Income society by 2030, with job opportunities and a high quality of life, Dr Kateera said infrastructure and utilities was one of the five strategic pillars for realising the key aspirations of Vision 2030.
“Implementation through the rehabilitation and development of power, road, rail and air transport, water and sanitation, housing and ICT infrastructure – include sustainable urban infrastructure, made prominent by increased growth in informal settlements as a result of rapid urbanisation.”