Cambodia: Agriculture Productivity Improvement Project, Northeast Village Development Project, Forest Concession Management And Control Project, and Flood Emergency Rehabilitation Project (PPAR)
The rural sector of Cambodia — which accounts for the majority of population, production and employment in the Cambodian economy as well as the great majority of poor people — continues to struggle under the consequences of war-torn infrastructure and displaced communities. The four projects... Full Description »
The rural sector of Cambodia — which accounts for the majority of population, production and employment in the Cambodian economy as well as the great majority of poor people — continues to struggle under the consequences of war-torn infrastructure and displaced communities. The four projects reviewed in this report represent an important effort by the Bank to assist the Government to address these critical infrastructure and capacity building needs directly related to the well being of people in the rural sector. The Agriculture Productivity Improvement Project, approved in 1997, was intended to enhance the capacity of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to implement a coordinated national program to help improve the quantity and quality of the technical, human and physical resources required to promote sustainable agricultural development improvements in Cambodia. The overall outcome is rated moderately unsatisfactory. The Northeast Village Development Project, approved in 1999, was intended to introduce decentralized, participatory, and poverty-focused approaches to rural development in some of the poorest areas of Cambodia. The overall outcome is rated satisfactory. The Forest Concession Management and Control Pilot Project, also a LIL and approved in 2000, was intended to lay the groundwork for a comprehensive set of operational guidelines and control procedures for sustainable forest management in concession areas, and to establish an effective forest crime monitoring and prevention capability. The overall outcome is rated unsatisfactory. The Flood Emergency Rehabilitation Project, approved in 2001, was intended to rehabilitate the economic and social infrastructure damaged by the 2000 floods and to assist the Government in formulating a long-term strategy aimed at reducing the country's vulnerability to flooding. The overall outcome is rated satisfactory. These projects provide five lessons: (1) Use of the Learning Instrument Loan: While it is understood that Learning Instrument Loan or other simplified instruments should not require the same amount of analysis as standard investments loans, the risk review analysis carried out at the concept review stage should identify any particular fiduciary or safeguards that would require regular preparation and appraisal; (2) The Importance of Continuous Contact for Effective Implementation: The fragile institutional framework in post-conflict Cambodia and the limited counterpart pool undermined the effectiveness of periodic Bank supervision and credibility; (3) Sector and Country Strategies as a Management Tool for Operations: Sector or country strategies are often seen as the leading edge for policy dialogue and the identification of investment opportunities, but their usefulness during project implementation may not be as widely recognized; (4) A Gradual Approach to Change: Institutions generally respond more favorably to moderate or gradual change than to radical innovation, particularly when power or stature is being threatened; and (5) Dealing with Informal Transaction Costs as a Development Issue: To an outsider, informal transactions costs may be seen as corruption, but to a participant they may be an expected form of sharing or a means of reaffirming one's role in a group.
Content Type : Reports , Doc Sub Category : Project Performance Assessment Report , Country : Cambodia
June 27, 2007