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Uganda funding for road transport development approved

afrol News, 11 December - The World Bank has approved a US$190 million International Development Association (IDA) credit to improve the connectivity and efficiency of the transport sector in Uganda.

The Transport Sector Development Project (TSDP) is also supported with a US$8 million grant from the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID). These funds will support the Government’s Transport Sector Master Plan over a four-year period -2010/11 - 2013/14.

The TSDP will specifically assist the government of Uganda in improving the condition of the national road network, and increasing capacity for road safety and transport sector management. The project will see the upgrading of the Gulu-Atiak and Vurra-Arua-Oraba roads (approximately 160 km) from gravel to paved standard and the improvement of road safety through the creation and operationalisation of a National Road Safety Authority (NRSA).

“Uganda’s road transport infrastructure serves as a transit corridor to the sea linking the landlocked neighboring countries of Rwanda, Burundi, southern Sudan and parts of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. What we want to see this operation achieve is the reduction of average transport cost and travel time on project roads, better access by the rural population, and a general decline in the annual accident fatalities,” said Dieter Schelling, Lead Transport Specialist and Task Team Leader for the Project.

The TSDP is expected to strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Works and Transport and the Uganda National Roads Authority to provide sector oversight, monitoring, policy formulation and planning, through the provision of technical assistance, the carrying out of studies, and the provision of training and equipment.

“The Government of Uganda has, through their National Transport Policy and Strategy, undertaken to promote less costly, efficient and reliable transport services as the means of providing effective support to increased agricultural and industrial production, trade, tourism, social and administrative services. This project supports that strategy and is expected to have broader economic development impact,” said Kundhavi Kadiresan, World Bank Uganda Country Manager.

Uganda’s road infrastructure provides for over 90 percent of passenger and freight traffic, and comprises 10,800 kilometers of national trunk roads, 27,500 kilometers of district roads; 4,800 kilometers of urban roads and approximately 35,000 kilometers of community access roads. About 3,000 kilometers of the national roads are paved.

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