Category: Project Cycle Stage- Implementation

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The financial management arrangements of the borrower and EA were robust. Separate project financial accounts were maintained and audited by statutory auditors. Except for fiscal year (FY) 2018, APFSs were received, albeit with delays up to 3.6 months from the due dates but within the grace period of 6 months. The APFS for FY2018 was rejected because it included a combined audit report for all three projects despite the requirement for separate reports and opinions. Also, the AEFSs for FY end-2017 and prior years were combined with the APFS. All non-compliances could have been mitigated with tighter monitoring from ADB.  

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

The overlapping implementation periods between project 1 and then-ongoing ADB Loan 2151 and other national programs, and concurrent preparation and appraisal of projects 2 and 3 of the MFF imposed a heavy burden on the ERA.  Exacerbating this burden was the initially weak capacity of project implementation units (PIUs). ADB providing greater implementation support, particularly for the preparation of subsequent tranches, would help address this challenge in future MFFs.  Such support would also help enhance the quality of subsequent tranches of the MFFs and mitigate the risk of implementation delays.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

Safeguards implementation arrangement in the executing agency (EA) was adequate. A chief engineer was deputed as director of safeguards and supported by four environmental and resettlement experts. Two officers from the state revenue department were posted as land acquisition officers.  These land acquisition officers provided much-needed support to the high-powered committee Divisional Level Committee established by the state government to fast track the implementation of the resettlement plans for subprojects under the project. Creating a land acquisition office in the PMU to manage unavoidable involuntary resettlement may be explored in ongoing and future projects.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: India

At appraisal, this project was classified category A for involuntary resettlement and indigenous peoples and an indigenous peoples’ development framework was prepared to guide the selection and preparation of an additional subproject where impacts on indigenous peoples were identified. During implementation, no indigenous peoples were impacted as none of the two landowners affected by the project’s acquisition of 0.47 hectares of land for resettlement purposes belonged to a scheduled tribe.  Therefore, no additional indigenous peoples safeguards documents such as an indigenous peoples plan needed to be prepared. However, the project was not recategorized B for involuntary resettlement and C for indigenous peoples, which would have highlighted the project’s strong adherence to a key ADB principle to avoid and minimize resettlement impacts.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

Financial management arrangements of the borrower and executing agency were robust and counterpart funding timely. Separate project financial accounts were maintained and audited by statutory auditors. For FY2008, no APFS or AEFS were submitted. The APFS for FY2018 was rejected as it included a combined audit report for all three projects despite separate reports and opinions being required. These non-compliances could have been avoided had ADB monitored and followed up closely on the submission of the documents.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

ERA has been headed by senior officers of the state government and this benefited decision making and interdepartmental coordination. It also enjoyed strong state government support, including timely counterpart funding, not least to complete sewerage works after loan closure.  Having ADB-financed projects managed by senior government officials needs to be worked out to the extent possible. (

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: India

Consultant performance under this project was less than satisfactory. The original PMC and one of the DSCs were weak and had difficulty fielding and maintaining experienced staff in the planned positions. Absence was frequent and several senior engineers were replaced, resulting in delayed output delivery. Upon contract completion for the original PMC and one of the DSCs, new consultants were hired and performed substantially better. However, implementation delays continued due to various factors such as site constraints, design changes, and consequent delay in finalizing and issuing technical and as-built drawings. Because of the need for replacements, a total of four consultants were engaged by the project.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

The construction contract for the STP constructed under this project included 1 year of O&M in addition to a 6-month trial run. After a year, O&M of the STP was handed over to the Urban Environmental Engineering Department.  It might be useful to extend this arrangement to other urban infrastructure works contracts, even if the entities responsible for the O&M of the facilities have enough technical capacities.  Under current state arrangements, the Public Health Engineering Department is responsible for technical O&M of water supply systems, the Housing and Urban Development Department for sewerage systems, and municipal corporations for solid waste facilities. With delayed property connections a frequent problem in ADB-financed sewerage interventions in India, it might also be helpful for ADB to explore requiring the incorporation of an annual implementation and financing plan for house connections in sewerage subproject plans and contracts.  Adherence to the implementation and financing plan should be considered part of contract performance.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

The Constitution of India mandates that the state allocate to urban local bodies (ULBs) the funds required to maintain their functions and sustain service delivery. The Central Finance Commission transfers accounts for 30%–40% of ULB finances, of which up to 90% may be used for the O&M of municipal assets. The state finance commission likewise supports the O&M of municipal assets through compensation grants and transfers to the municipal corporations. At project completion, state operating revenues appear enough to meet O&M expenses.  Nevertheless, continued payment by municipal corporations of O&M fees for water treatment plants and sewage treatment plants (STPs) would still be necessary for optimal maintenance and sustainability.  

Country: India

Project 1 exceeded its target of laying 180 kilometers of sewerage network (actual: 190 kilometers) and achieved its target on developing one sewage treatment plant with 30 million liters per day capacity.  However, because implementation was delayed by a mis-procured contract and the termination of other nonperforming contracts, it was able to install only 20,000 of its targeted 33,500 house connections.  While the remaining connections were completed in March 2019 with funds provided by the state and project 3 of the program, the shortfall impeded the expeditious realization of the intended benefits. 

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: India

Sufficient support is required for the implementation of multitranche financing facilities (MFFs) in the initial years as this could impose a heavy burden on executing and implementing agencies (EAs/IAs) that need to prepare subsequent tranches while also implementing the first project.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Sector:
Country: India

The executing agency, the Economic Reconstruction Agency (ERA), had a functioning project management unit for another ongoing ADB loan at the time the MFF was approved, and the project loan agreement was signed. Given this, consultant recruitment for project 1 could have proceeded immediately.  But for lack of staff and overload from multiple large projects, ERA did not proceed until after the loan became effective. As a result, it took 15 months to recruit the project management consultant (PMC) and one of the design and supervision consultants (DSCs), delaying project 1 startup. Advance action by ERA to facilitate consultant recruitment, detailed designs, and utility sharing would have helped minimize the startup delay and its knock-on effects on subsequent tranches and the whole investment program.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

The non-achievement of some GAP targets under could have been avoided if remedial actions were done during the MTR. Specifically, the agreed relegation of the setting up of the nonrevenue water (NRW) task force to the Public Health Engineering Department and the agreed reduction of the target number of women marshals should have been formally documented or reflected in the MTR aide memoire. This lesson underscores the need to regularly monitor the GAP progress to identify unrealistic targets and for the ADB responsible gender officer or assigned consultant to participate in the MTR mission to raise corrective measures.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

Three covenants related to financial management were not complied with. No APFS and AEFS were submitted for FY 2008. The APFSs for FY2018 were rejected as they included a combined audit report for all three MFF projects despite separate reports and opinions being required. Also, AEFSs for FY 2017 and prior years were combined with APFSs. These non-compliances may have been avoided if ADB monitored and followed up closely on the submissions made in line with the financial loan covenants.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

The overlapping implementation periods between project 1 and then-ongoing ADB Loan 2151 and other national programs, and concurrent preparation and appraisal of projects 2 and 3 of the MFF imposed a heavy burden on the ERA.  Exacerbating this burden was the initially weak capacity of project implementation units (PIUs). ADB providing greater implementation support, particularly for the preparation of subsequent tranches, would help address this challenge in future MFFs.  Such support would also help enhance the quality of subsequent tranches of the MFFs and mitigate the risk of implementation delays.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: India

Safeguards implementation arrangement in the ERA was adequate. An officer with the rank of chief engineer was deputed as the director of safeguards and was supported by four environmental and resettlement experts responsible for implementing safeguard requirements. Two officers from the state revenue department were posted as land acquisition officers.  These land acquisition officers provided much-needed support to the high-powered committee Divisional Level Committee established by the state government to fast-track the implementation of the resettlement plans for subprojects under projects 2 and 3. Creating a land acquisition office in the PMU to manage unavoidable involuntary resettlement may be explored in ongoing and future projects.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: India

During the preparation of the multitranche financing facility (MFF) in 2007, only outline plans and designs were required to formulate the investment program and generate cost estimates to secure the proposed ADB financing.  This meant that detailed surveys and designs had to wait after the approval of the periodic financing requests.  But as the recruitment of the first project management consultant (PMC) and design and supervision consultant (DSC) took 15 months, MFF startup and the development of detailed designs for project 1 were significantly held back. By the time all contracts were awarded, and project 1 implementation went full swing, it was already past midpoint of the original implementation period for the whole program. The delay in the completion of project 1 amounted to 61 months.  By contrast, although there were spillover works that needed to be finished post-MFF completion, projects 2 and 3 were both completed with minimal delays of three months each. Early preparation of the detailed designs for these projects, concurrent with the implementation of project 1, was key to the timelier completion of these projects. 

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: India

PFM and SOE reforms to ensure fiscal sustainability, like those in the program, have political and economic implications and are difficult to undertake without strong ownership. The implementation success of such policies resides in (i) a good understanding of vested interests; (ii) the government’s strong commitment; (iii) the institutional capacity of government agencies; (iv) effective partnership and coordination between ADB and the government; and (v) a strong appreciation for overall program benefits. All these were observed in the program.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Uzbekistan

This program supported the preparation of the medium-term framework (MTBF) and MTBF manual, including gender-responsive budgeting tools at the MOF.  Program experience has highlighted that institutionalizing change-management practices among those charged with implementing reforms requires enhancing both technical and change management competency. It is also necessary to enable the government to sustain capacity development programs beyond the life of a program for instance, by providing training experts, particularly to develop soft capacities.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Uzbekistan

This program successfully tackled a wide range of highly complex, interlinked issues.  In addition to the appropriate sequencing of reforms, its success was attributable to the development of adequate capacity among key stakeholders, including the Ministry of Finance (MOF), Central Bank of Uzbekistan, and State Asset Management Agency. Capacity development was made possible by the provision of ADB technical assistance. 

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Uzbekistan

Although none of the 37 contracts under this project experienced any implementation delays, the performance of the contractors could have been better with respect to the quality of work and the technical specifications and construction standards.  Specific issues were (i) design-related, affecting certain circuit-breakers, concrete poles for distribution lines, the size of pre-cast foundations, cross-arms, and system earthing; and (ii) construction-related, such as the stringing of transmission and distribution lines, installation of self-supporting insulated wire distribution lines, compaction of ground, installation of pre-cast foundations for steel lattice towers, anchor bolts for substation equipment, and grouting. These issues were either partially resolved or recommended for better technical specifications in future tranches of the MFF.  Employing national and international best practices will be key to improving the quality and technology in future tranches.  Encouraging contractors to improvise where possible and introduce new technology standards, incorporating lessons learned and issues identified in the technical specifications for the initial tranche, and prompting the project management units to be more proactive in using the project management consultant to develop the capacity of the operational staff on new technology and standards will also be helpful.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Azerbaijan

This MFF’s tranches 2 and 3 were supposed to be approved in November 2017 and March 2018, respectively. However, the restrictive approach taken by Azerbaijan to public external borrowing, which was absent at appraisal time, led to the deferment of these tranches. It might have been possible to push through with these tranches if they were processed close to the start of tranche 1, with the locations and routes identified upfront and thoroughly analyzed for potential construction and safeguard impacts. Overlapping processing and implementation of the first and subsequent tranches would have maintained the implementation momentum and maximize the benefits from the MFF.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Azerbaijan

This project experienced some implementation delays and had two loan extensions. Toktogul’s rehabilitation was delayed by almost 2 years due to a lack of responsive bidders during the initial bidding. The establishment of the Kyrgyz electricity settlement center (KESC) was delayed by 3 years because of difficulties, including disagreements, in developing the implementation consultant’s TOR and incompatibility between the KESC server hardware and the metering and data acquisition software. Two lessons emerge from this experience: (i) contracts need to be carefully packaged, i.e., the initial Toktogul HEPP contract should have been broken into separate lots, while the two separate KESC packages for server hardware and metering software packages should have been combined to improve compatibility; and (ii) clear consultants’ TORs should be developed and agreed by all relevant stakeholders well before implementation, especially when there are complex issues to be resolved.  

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Kyrgyz Republic

Utilizing loan and grant savings, a works contract to rehabilitate the 500-kilovolt switchyard at the Toktogul hydroelectric power plant (HEPP) was added to the scope of this project.  The additional scope required a supplementary initial environmental examination (IEE) that included the handling of asbestos-containing material, which was not covered by the EMP and therefore needed to be addressed. The executing agency and the project management consultant for the Toktogul HEPP experienced some difficulty in doing this because precise requirements were not specified in the EMP.  It would have been useful for ADB to conduct a training on asbestos handling in addition to ADB’s Safeguard Policy Statement. In ongoing and future projects, training and advice on ADB’s safeguard policy should be strengthened and made responsive to issues and concerns that emerge during project implementation.

Project Cycle Stage: Implementation
Country: Kyrgyz Republic

There was a delay of 1.5 years in project completion.  This can be attributed to the 13-month delay in mobilizing the service providers, which affected social mobilization and the award of subproject grants. Advanced contracting of the consultants during project design would have avoided startup delays.

Project Cycle Stage: Preparation, Implementation
Country: Nepal
Independent Evaluation, ADB
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