Stakeholders Undertake Prioritization Exercise to Line up Infrastructure Projects in Luganville City

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With the purpose to identify and align infrastructure projects with the needs, resources, and context of the city, a prioritization exercise was conducted on February 22, 2018 in Luganville, Republic of Vanuatu. Using CDIA’s City Infrastructure Investment Programming and Prioritization (CIIPP) toolkit, stakeholders were able to discuss investment options, and systematically determine projects that are most appropriate to develop.

The recent years have witnessed increasing attention to infrastructure investment in Luganville due to its economic potential and infrastructure needs. Due to its massive infrastructure requirements, an integrated urban development plan must be in place to serve as a blueprint for the city to implement its urban development strategy, and a vehicle through which financiers can potentially identify and finance investment.

Towards this, CDIA is currently supporting the implementation of the Luganville Integrated Urban Development Plan (LIUDP) and associated feasibility studies project, which is being carried out in two phases. Phase I entails the formulation of a short, yet actionable and integrated urban plan for the city, while Phase II entails producing feasibility study (FS) outputs for identified priority projects. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is expected to use the outputs to facilitate agreement on USD 12-million support to the Government of Vanuatu.

As an output of Phase I, the CIIPP exercise was undertaken by 27 representatives from various agencies including the Luganville Municipal Corporation, provincial council, public works, police department, as well as the private sector. Using CDIA’s CIIPP toolkit, they jointly assessed nine projects and ranked them according to purpose, public response, as well as environmental, climate change and social impacts, among others. The ranking will further inform the selection of projects for the FS work under Phase II of LIUDP.

“The main purpose of the CIIPP exercise was to stimulate discussion and raise awareness on the merits of alternative investments,” said Mr. Stuart King, CDIA’s Senior Infrastructure Finance Specialist who managed the activity.

Based on the exercise, two key investments – waterfront tourist infrastructure and water supply and sanitation – were significantly favoured compared to the other seven projects. In addition, main drainage improvement and waste management improvement projects also earned strong support.

As expected, the waterfront tourist project ranked the highest partly as a reflection of its importance in the coastal protection of the central business district and the high profile nature of the investment. While a similar project in Port Vila proved to be very popular, the prospect of increased tourist revenues appealed quite well to stakeholders.

From the ranking of projects, CDIA is proposing that the water supply and sanitation project be combined with the main drainage improvement and waste management improvement projects to offer an integrated package of interlinked infrastructure projects that may be the focus of the LIUDP’s Phase II activities.

“The workshop was a major success, not only in providing valuable insight into the design and scope of the proposed project that the LIUDP can incorporate, but also in terms of acting as a serious consultation exercise, which enabled stakeholders to now know more about the LIUDP project, and the major infrastructure challenges facing their city and how they interrelate to one another,” said Mr. King.

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