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Sudan government, donors launch recovery plan by KEN RAMANI and REUTERS

3/9 3:30pm

A new six-year recovery and development plan for Sudan was launched yesterday in Nairobi.

The move marked the official end of a one-year preparation for the post-war era for a new Sudan.

The document: The Framework for Sustained Peace, Development and Poverty Eradication in Sudan, is an outcome of a Joint Assessment Mission (JAM) organised by the UN and the World Bank.

Teams led by the government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M) reached a consensus over the major development challenges facing the country, and reflected the spirit of the historic peace agreement signed in January in Nairobi.

The document addresses eight areas including capacity-building, governance and rule of law, economic policy, infrastructure, productive sectors, social protection and livelihoods, basic social services and information.

The Joint National Transition Team (JNTT) will hold the first post - war international donors pledging conference between April 11 and 12 in Oslo, Norway.

UN’s Jon Bennett explained that the Oslo meeting will bring together 55 delegations including the Arab League, African Union, Igad, UN, EU, donors, civil societies, among others.

The funds required will address development concerns in war-affected areas of North and South Sudan.

The total assessed needs through 2007 are about $7.8 billion ($4.3 billion for the North and $3.5 billion for the South). The per capita expenditure in the South is considerably higher than that of the North.

Of the total, only $2.66 billion is being requested from the international community.

Sudan itself will contribute considerably more than the international community towards the pro-poor recovery programme.

Tajelsir Mahjoub, the government of Sudan JAM team leader said: This is not just a run-of-the-mill appeal document. It is a statement of intent and a political commitment on our part to be fully engaged in the reconstruction of our country. Yes, we need external assistance, but we will more than match that with our national resources?"

JAM is divided into two phases: the first, from July 2005 through the end of 2007, represents immediate and detailed needs, particularly for the expected massive return of displaced people from inside and outside the country; the second, from 2008 to mid-2011, is the period when major infrastructural programmes will be undertaken, and when Sudan hopes to meet some of the development targets represented by the international Millennium Development Goals.

Kosti Manibe, the SPLM’s JAM team leader, says south Sudan has no hard roads, only rudimentary health and education facilities.

However, with technical assistance combined with new oil wealth, we expect to catch up rapidly, he adds.

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