New Development Bank (NDB) president Marcos Prado Troyjo on Friday said that the multilateral funding agency will work jointly with India to prepare country-specific strategies for boosting infrastructure investment.
The Shanghai-based funding agency's president said that Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) has suggested country-specific strategies for member nations.
Such a country strategy would provide the overarching framework for guiding the bank's priorities in the country, he said in a recorded message.
"We will work jointly with the government of India to prepare such country partnership strategy and present it to the bank's board of directors in 2023 for its consideration," he said at a workshop on project evaluation organised by NDB.
Similarly, he said, the bank has taken note of the evaluations findings and recommendations related to project supervision in order to ensure that implementation support in overall portfolio management are guaranteed.
NDB approved projects
Since 2016, NDB has approved around USD 7.2 billion for 21 projects in India, with millions of people expected to benefit.
The NDB was established by Brics countries -- Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa -- and was formally opened in July 2015. Bangladesh, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Uruguay have since joined the bank.
Indian transport sector
The transport sector in India has seen a surge in recent years, and roads have been recognised as a crucial component in socio-economic development. The evaluation of the Madhya Pradesh Major District Roads Project (MPMDR), the first NDB-financed project in India, found that it had achieved its goals overall.
This includes over 1,500 kilometres of improved road, providing better access and connectivity for villages along the route, and 130 road accident black spots eliminated.
Speaking at the workshop Ashwani Muthoo, director general (DG) of the NDB Independent Evaluation Office, said there may be opportunities to link roads development with rail and even water projects in the future. There also needs to be a plan to ensure the road network is aligned with the National Logistics Policy.
Develop country stratergy
One of the main evaluation recommendations is to develop a country strategy to guide the NDB-India partnership and programming moving forward, Muthoo said.
Develop multimodal transport stratergy
Another is to prepare a multimodal transport strategy or plan, he said, adding, the evaluation highlighted the need to conduct more robust supervision and implementation support, and closely monitor follow-up to supervision recommendations to allow for mid-course adjustments for better outcomes at project completion.
Commenting on the evaluation findings, D J Pandian, DG of the NDB Indian Regional Office, said: "Since the beginning of partnership between the bank and India seven years ago, substantial achievements have been made; yet as the evaluation shows, there are still important challenges that require to further strengthen joint work to improve the bank's operational and strategic performance in the country."
He also stressed that the bank's commitment to operationalise the evaluation's recommendations in a timely manner in future projects supported by the NDB in India.
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