Special Edition: PIDA 10-Year Implementation Report – Japanese

Special Edition: PIDA 10-Year Implementation Report – Japanese

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Special Edition: PIDA 10-Year Implementation Report - Japanese

The report showcases the significant progress of PIDA in the past 10 years and identifies contributions of Japanese partners in shaping Africa's infrastructure landscape. The report reflects on the achievements and challenges faced over the years, outlining a roadmap for the future of PIDA and emphasizing the continued commitment of Japanese partners to supporting Africa's development journey.

PIDA Steering Committee to Gather in Addis Ababa for Infrastructure Development Talks

PIDA Steering Committee to Gather in Addis Ababa for Infrastructure Development Talks

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 20 March 2024: The Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) Steering Committee is scheduled to convene from March 26-27, 2024, at the African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to discuss progress and next steps for accelerating Africa’s infrastructure development priorities.

The meeting will bring together representatives of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD), the African Development Bank (AfDB), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Regional Economic Communities (RECs), and invited pan-African organizations.

PIDA, an African Union initiative, is a framework launched in 2012 to integrate, connect and transform Africa through infrastructure. Mobilizing adequate resources is crucial for expediting the implementation of PIDA’s priority projects. The second Phase of PIDA (PIDA PAP2) comprises 69 strategic regional transport, energy, ICT and water projects that require USD 161 billion to bring them to completion.

The Steering Committee aims at reviewing progress made since the previous meeting in implementing PIDA PAP2 and identifying any challenges encountered; providing strategic guidance on priority actions required in 2024 to accelerate PIDA implementation and the achievement of its overarching goals of promoting sustainable infrastructure as well as exploring opportunities to synergize efforts among key partners and stakeholders.

The African Union and its member states as well as Regional Economic Communities are working to attract the necessary capital from both public and private investors. Resource mobilization efforts involve engaging development finance institutions, multilateral banks, and potential donors to secure funding commitments for PIDA projects. PIDA implementing stakeholders are seeking to form robust alliances with the private sector, non-governmental organizations, and development partners to foster technical, logistical, and financial cooperation.

The PIDA Steering Committee meeting in Addis Ababa is expected to produce recommendations and targeted interventions for this year to enhance strategic coordination and collaboration for the implementation of PIDA’s priority projects. //Ends

Transforming Infrastructure Data Management with the Nile River Basin Investment Programme

Transforming Infrastructure Data Management with the Nile River Basin Investment Programme

Overview of Participants

The African Union Development Agency-NEPAD’s (AUDA-NEPAD) recent upgrade of the African Infrastructure Database (AID) represents a significant advancement in streamlining infrastructure projects across Africa. This enhancement, in line with evolving stakeholder requirements, ensures accurate, up-to-date project information is available, including details on status, financing, and implementation. The database is fundamental in fostering accuracy and reliability of data, which are crucial for the platform’s effectiveness and in enhancing project management skills necessary for tracking and reporting on infrastructure projects.

In a collaborative initiative between AUDA-NEPAD and the Nile River Basin Investment Programme (NR-BIP), supported by GIZ, a series of training sessions were launched, aimed at capacity building within the Nile Basin region. These sessions, held from January 15th to February 2nd, 2024, were designed to empower regional stakeholders to effectively utilize the AID platform. Focused on enabling stakeholders to manage project data proficiently, the trainings took place in various locations, including Entebbe, Uganda (January 15th–19th), Kisumu, Kenya (January 29th–30th), Kigali, Rwanda (January 30th–31st), and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (January 30th–February 2nd). This effort ensured the AID remained current, accurate, and reflective of ongoing developments within the Nile Basin, contributing significantly to improved management and coordination of infrastructure data, aligning with broader objectives of sustainable development and regional cooperation.

Participants from five key organizations, including the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC), Nile Eastern Lakes Investment Platform (NELIP), Eastern Nile Technical Regional Office (ENTRO), NR-BIP, and the Eastern African Power Pool (EAPP), benefited from these in-person sessions. The training structure encompassed several key modules: introduction to the AID platform, new project induction, data updating and validation, and project monitoring and reporting. This hands-on approach significantly bolstered participants’ confidence and competence in effectively using the platform.

One of the key achievements of these training sessions was the fostering of collaboration and knowledge sharing among stakeholders. Participants shared details about their projects, effectively reducing duplication of effort. For instance, initial confusion regarding the coordinators of specific projects was efficiently resolved through a consolidated project view, enhancing clarity of responsibilities. Another significant impact was the enhancement of participants’ skills in data collection, updating, and validation. The training taught best practices in data collection methodologies, ensuring the quality and reliability of the information captured, enabling participants to contribute significantly to continuous improvements within their roles and organizations. Furthermore, the program facilitated harmonization of projects across the Nile Basin, offering better opportunities for coordination and financing as information and data became more accessible and comprehensible to all stakeholders.

The training also identified key opportunities, such as strengthening partnerships and the potential for further engagement in data collection and analysis. However, it highlighted challenges like the persistent use of manual processes in managing infrastructure data across organizations. Recommendations moving forward included sharing project lists with various stakeholders, creating regional infrastructure dashboards, engaging with other Regional Economic Communities (RECs) to utilize the upgraded platform, and developing institutional systems for data management. Implementing a roadmap for training and event rollout to other regions and organizations was also emphasized.

This initiative represents a milestone in capacity building within the Nile Basin region, elevating the technical capabilities of participants and contributing significantly to the harmonized approach towards project assessment, monitoring, evaluation, and reporting within the NR-BIP. As participating stakeholders succinctly put it, “The AID serves as a pivotal single window into infrastructure projects across Africa. This is crucial for developing infrastructure that aligns with regional integration and corridor development.” These trainings are therefore vital in enhancing access to such critical regional infrastructure data.

AUDA-NEPAD & FSPPI’s Joint Initiative in N’Djamena

AUDA-NEPAD & FSPPI’s Joint Initiative in N’Djamena

AUDA-NEPAD and the Fonds Special pour la Préparation des Projets d’InfraStructure au Tchad (FSPPI) recently joined forces in N’Djamena, Chad. Over three days, from February 26th to 28th, 2024, the two institutions held talks aimed at charting a strategic course for Chad’s infrastructure, digitalisation, and capacity building. The workshop endeavoured to ensure that regulations and laws are aligned with the post-COVID-19 environment, integrating provisions for future advancements such as AI and advanced manufacturing techniques. Among the outcomes achieved were the formulation of a forward-thinking 10-year infrastructure development plan, the establishment of a digitisation strategy for FSPPI, and the creation of a comprehensive capacity development strategy. With the help of AUDA-NEPAD, this cooperative effort prepares Chad for transformative growth and development over the following ten years.

On the first day, teams were introduced, the work program was adopted, and there was a detailed discussion on integrated corridor and economic development techniques. A substantial portion of the day was dedicated to comprehending the African Infrastructure Database (AID), the Virtual PIDA Information Centre (vPIC), Job Creation Toolkit, and strategies for an integrated Data Management System.

On the second day, the attention turned to examining thematic work plans that include infrastructure, digitalization, and capacity building in breakout sessions. The afternoon seminars focused on creating a strategic infrastructure development plan, implementing a digital project information management system, and designing a comprehensive capacity enhancement program.

Day three was crucial in finalizing the results of the earlier sessions. The teams introduced and examined the strategic plans for infrastructure development, digitalization, and capacity building. These sessions were crucial in establishing a clear direction for the future. Elaboration was also done to align the road map and strategic direction to the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA).

Group Photo of AUDA-NEPAD and FSPPI Teams

The mission’s most significant accomplishment was creating a forward-thinking 10-year plan for infrastructure development, showcasing the commitment and vision of those involved. The formation of a digitization strategy for FSPPI was equally important to ensure the organization remains at the forefront of technological advancement. The mission successfully created a detailed capacity development strategy, emphasizing the dedication to ongoing growth and skill improvement.

The AUDA-NEPAD and FSPPI mission in N’Djamena was a gathering that involved exchanging ideas, views, and hopes for a brighter Chad, rather than just a series of talks. The program ended with uplifting concluding remarks delivered by FSPPI Vice Managing Director Mr Abdelkerim Sougour Bourigué, reflecting optimism and advancement. Chad and FSPPI are beginning an ambitious adventure guided by a roadmap designed to lead them to unparalleled growth and development over the course of the next decade with support from AUDA-NEPAD.

Call for MSME-led Digital Solutions Forge Valuable Connections with Investors and Partners at the Intra-African Trade Fair in Cairo Egypt

Call for MSME-led Digital Solutions Forge Valuable Connections with Investors and Partners at the Intra-African Trade Fair in Cairo Egypt

The 3rd Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) 2023 hosted by the Arab Republic of Egypt in Cairo, from 9-15 November 2023, served as a platform for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to highlight their potential and interact with investors from across the continent. The event proved to be a catalyst for fostering partnerships, encouraging trade, and promoting economic growth within Africa.

The Output 3 of GIZ Support to PIDA: Green Infrastructure Corridors for Intra-African Trade, is a micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME)-driven Digital Solutions to support green infrastructure and trade. Under the initiative, ten African MSMEs have been selected to receive technical advisory services and capacity building. These MSMEs from seven African Union (AU) Member States, that specialize in providing digital solutions for green infrastructure and intra-African trade, representing all five AU regions, have been chosen from a pool of over 50 applicants in response to AUDA-NEPAD’s 2022 Call for MSME-led Digital Solutions which is supported by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).

Of the 10 MSMEs supported by AUDA-NEPAD and GIZ, five were selected to exhibit at the AUDA-NEPAD stand during IATF2023. The IATF offered MSMEs a unique opportunity to exhibit their products and services to a diverse and influential audience. With a wide range of sectors represented, including agriculture, manufacturing, technology, and more, MSMEs were able to showcase their innovation and entrepreneurship on a grand scale. The fair served as a launchpad for these businesses to gain exposure, build networks, and explore potential investment avenues.

The presence of investors and financial institutions at the AUDA-NEPAD stand, opened doors for MSMEs seeking capital infusion and strategic partnerships. Throughout the exhibition, MSMEs actively engaged with potential investors, presenting their business models, growth plans, and unique value propositions. These interactions allowed investors to gain insight into the MSMEs’ potential for growth, while SMEs had the chance to pitch their ideas and secure the much-needed funding to drive their businesses forward.

In addition to one-on-one meetings with investors and potential clients/customers, the MSMES also had an opportunity to engage the AUDA-NEPAD CEO. They discussed challenges, opportunities, and strategies for fostering sustainable growth in Africa’s SME sector. The insights shared during these discussions proved invaluable for MSMEs, providing them with guidance on market trends, regulatory frameworks, and access to markets.

In a meeting with the Head of Infrastructure, Dr Towela Nyirenda-Jere, MSMEs engaged in a productive discussion on the deployment of digital solutions in green infrastructure and intra-African trade. The meeting focused on exploring innovative ways to leverage technology for sustainable development and enhancing trade within the continent. There was a shared commitment to further explore the potential of digital solutions in green infrastructure development and intra-African trade. The MSMEs expressed their readiness to collaborate with other relevant stakeholders to drive the adoption of digital technologies, promote sustainable practices, and enhance trade across the continent. By harnessing the power of digital solutions, MSMEs aim to contribute to the development of green infrastructure and the expansion of intra-African trade. They recognize that innovative technologies, combined with collaborative efforts, can create a more sustainable and prosperous future for Africa.

Furthermore, the MSMEs had an interaction with the Gender Expert, Jessica Annor, who among other things highlighted the importance of women inclusion in the development of digital technology. The conversation centred around recognizing the untapped potential of women in the tech industry and the need to create an enabling environment for their participation. On the other hand, the MSMEs emphasized that women bring unique perspectives, skills, and creativity to the digital technology sector. They argued that by harnessing the talents of women, the industry can benefit from diverse insights and innovative solutions, leading to more inclusive and effective technologies.

Post – IATF Success Stories:

Several success stories emerged in the aftermath of the IATF, highlighting concrete results that can be achieved through interactions between SMEs and investors. For instance, Milimonline, a technology startup operating in the Malawian Agri-Food Marketplace, effectively established communication with a local commercial bank in Malawi, which resulted in a prospective partnership that could potentially involve direct investment. Discussions regarding a prospective partnership agreement with Absa Bank of Zambia are currently underway. These substantial investments from the banks will enable the organization to extend its operations and achieve a more extensive presence throughout the continent. In response to the insightful feedback provided by customers, Milimonline has modified their business model from one of commission to one of subscription. Additionally, the IATF assisted Milimonline in identifying 56 potential customers; since then, the company has onboarded 12 high-value clients from four African countries.

During IATF, Eazy Chain, a logistic startup from Togo, formed four strategic partnerships with major players in the logistics industry. These partnerships not only offered financial support but also shared their knowledge in market penetration and distribution networks, thereby contributing to the overall expansion of the logistics sector in Togo. Eazy Chain has formed a partnership with a well-known pet food manufacturer from France to manage their operations in Togo.

Since IATF, Eazy Chain experienced a significant 25% increase in website traffic. This rise is a clear indication of increased interest and involvement in their services, showcasing the beneficial influence of participating in international trade events. Currently, Eazy Chain has successfully acquired 25 more new customers. These customers demonstrate a strong desire to utilize their services for the importation and exportation of commodities to and from Togo. The increase in the number of new clients is evidence of the expanding confidence and acknowledgment of Eazy Chain’s capabilities of Eazy Chain.

These success stories demonstrate the power of the IATF in connecting SMEs with investors and fostering mutually beneficial partnerships. Among the numerous success stories that emerged from the fair, the interactions between the five MSMEs and potential investors and partners left a lasting impression.