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LESSONS:

Timor-Leste: Road Sector Improvement Project

sector: Transport | country: Timor-Leste

Several lessons from the project completion report (PCR) and project experience should be emphasized. First, the community empowerment initiative (CEI) needs to be replicated and further improved. By extending the benefits of national road development, ADB road sector projects will get more support and facilitate economic growth and poverty reduction more effectively. (ADB approved a Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction grant of $3 million to carry out a nationwide program to diffuse, promote, and provide training for community-based local infrastructure works, especially roads, and to support further work on maintenance programs. ADB.) The coverage and quality of the maintenance that can be expected on project roads should be thoroughly assessed and spelled out upfront before future interventions in the country. Meanwhile, ADB should consider a sector-wide approach rather than standalone maintenance contracts to make road investments sustainable. Timor-Leste needs a road sector maintenance program and this program must include an institutional set-up, a policy framework, programming, implementation capacity, and funding that are effective and adequate. Finally, in a country where data is scarce, of relative poor quality, and thus hard to interpret, economic and social analysis and monitoring and evaluation of projects need to focus on individual subprojects rather than broad aggregations. (Linking the data collected to particular areas and works done should help improve the interpretation of subproject experience and validate data collection. It will also do more to identify elements of success and shortcomings.)

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