The member states of Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) are convening in Entebbe, Uganda on Monday to assess the progress of Regional Infrastructure Mater Plan (IRIMP) which was launched in May 2018.
The development of the master plan was conceived basing on the objective of regional integration to create an open, unified, regional economic space for private operators – a single market open to competitive entry and well-integrated into the global economy. The components include a network of efficient infrastructure services; transport, energy and communications.
According to a statement from the IGAD Secretariat released on Tuesday the initiative is meant to promote trade in the region.
“IRIMP is meant to enhance regional physical and economic integration, thus promoting trade, movement of goods and persons and poverty reduction amongst its Member States,” said part of the statement.
The IRIMP also aims at addressing the inadequate regional infrastructure networks.
“With projects such as the Ethiopia-Djibouti railway, Ethiopia-Kenya Power Interconnector, Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and others, underdeveloped infrastructure still remains a major constraint in the IGAD region with no regional master plan of priority projects built on the consensus of its member states,” said the statement.
The initiative is financed through the support from the African Development Bank (AfDB) where IPE Global in association with Africon Consulting Engineers were contracted to prepare and complete it by June this year.
The IGAD region comprising of eight (8) member countries namely Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda; where each member state has substantial untapped opportunities in every economic sector and are backed by a large market of more than 220 million people and promising business climate.
The upcoming Entebbe dialogue organized by the IGAD Economic Cooperation and Social Development Division is expected to educate and inform stakeholders on the ways projects will be designed in environmental and socially acceptable manner with the necessary mitigation measures. It will also deliberate on opportunity for stakeholders to support and back the development of the IRIMP among NGOs, non-state actors and others.