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LESSONS:

Hunan Flood Management Sector Project: Project Completion Report

sector: Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Rural Development | country: China, People’s Republic of

Sector project implementation challenge. This sector project with 35 subprojects presented an implementation challenge, particularly for land acquisition and resettlement. This included the difficulties of preparing the resettlement plans of 27 noncore subprojects during project implementation and ensuring external monitoring and evaluation (M&E).

Inadequate support for project management. The design allowance for consultant inputs to support project management was inadequate. Adequate loan proceeds should have been earmarked for these services, considering the scale and complexity of the project and the capacities and experience of the provincial project management office (PPMO) and local project management offices (LPMOs).

Shortcomings in environmental management. The local environmental protection bureaus (LEPBs) should have been closely consulted during project preparation. ADB should have assessed the capacities of the LPMOs and LEPBs for programing and implementing environmental monitoring in more detail. ADB should have provided more regular guidance to the PPMO and conducted more frequent follow-ups regarding the implementation of the consolidated environmental management plan (CEMP) and the environmental management plans (EMPs). This was particularly important for ensuring that the environmental management activities required by ADB but not by domestic standards were actually carried out. The requirements for environmental monitoring, particularly the frequency of reporting, should have been spelled out precisely in the project agreement.

Incomplete external monitoring and evaluation of resettlement. The LPMOs committed during project preparation to pay independent agencies for external resettlement M&E but became reluctant to do so. As a result, the M&E reporting was less frequent than required. ADB should have financed the M&E with loan proceeds, to ensure the M&E to be carried out without relying on LPMOs’ payments to the agencies. The two agencies should have provided the LPMOs with reports or feedback to establish close cooperation with them.

Issues caused by related urban development plans. The implementation of somesubprojects was delayed due to changes in the designs to be consistent with related urban development plans, followed by the contract variations made necessary by these redesigns. It also meant that the affected elements of the subprojects would have to be carried out only when the related urban development plans were to be implemented. Related urban development plans should have been fully considered when subprojects were designed.

Offsetting weakness in low bids. ADB’s introduction of a stronger performance security requirement to the standard national competitive bidding (NCB) document for works after slow performance by the initial contractors proved effective in preventing similar problems in later subprojects. The new requirement weeded out bidders whose bids were too low to actually cover the costs of an adequate delivery of works.

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