World Bank approves 648bn/- loan for enhancing infrastructure

World Bank approves 648bn/- loan for enhancing infrastructure

THE World Bank through International Development Association (IDA) has approved a loan of 278 million US dollars (equivalent to 648bn/-) to be used for strengthening urban management and access to better infrastructure and services in the country. Dubbed Tanzania Cities Transforming Infrastructure and Competitiveness (TACTIC), the project will provide support to key areas of urban management in participating cities.

In addition to the infrastructure expenditures, the support encompasses municipal financing, urban planning, resilience and green development, enhanced service delivery, and local economic development.

Through these activities, TACTIC is expected to directly benefit over seven million people through strengthened urban management performance, and among them five million through improved basic infra￾structure and services.

TACTIC is coordinating with other projects funded by the government and various development partners including the European Union, the Danish International Development Agency, the Nordic Development Fund, and the French Development Agency to mention a few. Mara Warwick, World Bank Country Director for Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe said Tanzanian cities are increasingly vulnerable to climate change due to projected changes in rainfall patterns, which, when combined with poor development controls and environmental degradation, will increase flooding.

“This investment directly responds to these vulnerabilities by including climate change adaptation as a cross￾cutting issue in its design.

It also supports connectivity and access to markets through road infrastructures, bus stop improvements, and public space upgrades to reduce travel times and costs, and safety improvements,” she said.

Tanzania’s urban population is expected to increase from 34 per cent in 2018 to 49 per cent by 2040, with the highest growth rates occurring in the country’s secondary and tertiary cities. “Urban areas are critical for Tanzania’s economy and for poverty reduction, however, institutional systems and infra￾structures have not kept pace with rapid urbanisation,” added Ms Warwick.

She said through the project the urban poor and vulnerable populations will benefit from increased access to urban infrastructure, basic services, economic opportunities, and reduced risks from climate impacts.

At the national level, the project will also strengthen the institutional capacity of central ministries.

David Mason, World Bank Urban Specialist and Task Team Leader said rapid urbanisation and increased population density has contributed to urban sprawl and low-density development in Tanzania’s cities, with poor connectivity between people, industries, and markets.

The risk of climate-related disasters also runs high.

“TACTIC will contribute to harnessing urbanisation to promote economic growth and job creation; strengthening public accountability and financial efficiency in delivering services; and improving the efficiency and attractiveness of public investments to crowd-in private investments.”

In 2021 the ministry of State President’s Office responsible for Regional Administration and Local Government (PO-RALG) informed the National Assembly that TACTIC will benefit 45 cities, municipal, and town councils.

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