WASHINGTON, May 19, 2014 - About 190 000 producers, investors and members of agricultural organizations in the Centre Artibonite region in the heart of Haiti will benefit from improved access to local markets and services as a result of a US$58 million grant from the International Development Association (IDA) approved today by the World Bank Board of Directors. This project aims to attract public and private investment, and build resilience to climate shocks.
"The development of the Central Artibonite region will help fight against extreme poverty that represents the socio -economic situation for more than half the population in the region. It is aligned with the Government's efforts to diversify the sources of wealth in the region and develop its potential," said Marie-Carmelle Jean Marie, Minister of Economy and Finance.
The Central Artibonite region is located between three important economic poles: the capital Port -au- Prince in the South, the city Cap-Haitien in the North, and the Dominican Republic in the East. Agriculture is a key sector for the region, which is highly vulnerable to natural hazards and where producers are isolated and lack of reliable roads to connect production to processing sites and local markets. This lack of road infrastructure also limits the economic transit to the capital, the North and the Dominican Republic.
“Nearly 80 percent of traffic is by land in Haiti. Enhancing connectivity for producers by allowing them to move and have access to other economic centers whatever the climatic conditions will have a decisive impact on the economic growth of the region. All-weather roads are also a key asset for investors," said Mary Barton- Dock, World Bank Special Envoy to Haiti.
Among concrete results to be achieved by the funding are:
- Nearly 190,000 producers and 30 percent of women will benefit from all-weather roads and improved connectivity and logistics for investment, production and trade
- 180km of rural and non- rural roads will be rehabilitated
- 300 local officials will be trained in market management, climate resilience measures in the transport sector and urban planning tools
- 10 rural and urban markets will be rehabilitated
This five year project will be implemented by the Technical Execution Unit of the Ministry of Economy and Finance. The funding includes a US$ 50 million IDA grant and a US$ 8 million grant from the Strategic Climate Fund.