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PRESS RELEASE

Democratic Republic of Congo: World Bank Helps Strengthen Urban Development

May 4, 2017


KINSHASA, May 4, 2017— The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved today an additional IDA Credit of $90 million for the Urban Development Project.

The additional credit scales up the existing project, broadens its scope to include additional cities, increases outcomes, and strengthens the results of the Urban Development Project in the six current project cities. It expands the geographic reach of the project by adding three more project cities for a total of nine and revising the results framework to incorporate results from the proposed additional financing with more expected beneficiaries and more cities implementing improved urban management practices.

”The project is designed to help improve urban governance and implement urban management tools in project cities, such as more efficient revenue collection, better management of municipal own resources, and better urban planning practices,” said Mahine Diop, World Bank Task Team Leader of the project.  

DRC is undergoing a rapid, chaotic urbanization process, with the 12 largest cities estimated to be growing at 4.7 percent annually. The country has moved from 9.9 percent urbanized in 1956 to 42 percent in 2015, with push factors such as insecurity and lack of economic opportunities in rural areas driving this growth in recent years. Cities have grown haphazardly, with little planning, few standards, and inadequate land management practices.

The additional funds will help increase access to basic services and infrastructure under the project (for example, roads and drainage, markets, schools, health centers) and decrease some of the substantial investment deficits in provincial capitals. It also strengthens the programmatic aspect of the project’s performance-based approach for access to investment funds by providing urban management tools developed under the project to additional cities.

The activities have been developed, at the government’s request, based on the recommendations of the DRC Urbanization Review and Land Sector Review, and to further pilot the performance-based approach with a view to mainstreaming it into the government’s decentralization policies. This will help build the institutions of urban management and support the emergence of cities in the DRC as engines of economic growth. It will unlock the economic potential of cities by focusing on investments in economic infrastructure and services that benefit poor residents, such as schools and health clinics.

Media Contacts
In Kinshasa
Louise Mekonda Engulu
Tel : +243-0817-005-215
lengulu@worldbank.org
In Washington
Ekaterina Svirina
Tel : +1 (202) 458-1042
esvirina@worldbank.org


PRESS RELEASE NO:
2017/115/AFR

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