Multidisciplinary global consulting firm Louis Berger, as part of a consortium led by NTU International A/S, has been hired to support the development of the transportation sector in the African, Caribbean and Pacific (A.C.P.) Group of States, with a focus on sub-Saharan Africa.
This 2.3 euro million ($2.6 million USD) project aims to promote inclusive political, economic and social development through enhanced regional integration by strengthening African countries’ ability to regulate, organize and finance better inter-regional and continental transportation infrastructure through safe trans-boundary transportation corridors and integrated transportation policies. The project also will support progress toward the Millennium Development Goals in A.C.P. countries, according to the company.
The consortium will help the African Union Commission’s Department of Infrastructure and Energy improve its sector management capacity as well as support the implementation of the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) Priority Action Plan projects. In addition, the consortium will strengthen the transportation pillar of the 2014-2017 Infrastructure Agenda of the Joint Africa-European Union Strategy, an initiative that outlines a long term shared vision of the future of Africa-European Union relations in a globalized world, and will promote the startup of smart corridor activities, according to the company.
“Taken together, these efforts will lower overall transportation costs and create safer, more affordable transportation facilities that will result in greater market access, socioeconomic development, welfare and regional stability,” said Pascal Houdeau, deputy general manager of operations in western and eastern Africa.
A.C.P. is an organization created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. Apart from Cuba, it includes 79 African, Caribbean, and Pacific state signatories to the Cotonou Agreement, also known as the "ACP-European Community Partnership Agreement,” that binds them to the European Union. Also, PIDA is promoting socio-economic development and poverty reduction in Africa through improved access to integrated regional and continental infrastructure networks and services, according to the company.
Louis Berger noted that it has more than 50 years of experience in Africa and nearly 25 years of experience in Ethiopia, where the firm has implemented almost 20 projects. These assignments cover a broad range of professional services in transport, agriculture and economic and institutional development.