- Supporting urban planning in Phnom Penh
- Cidade - Brasil: Supporting the reconditioning of 13 Brazilian city centres
- Committing for Cities without Slums through Cities Alliance
- Supporting dialogue between players around the delivery of local public services
- Supporting the participatory programme for urban social development in Mali
- Supporting Madagascar’s National Land Programme
- Instituting Urban Land Registries to service local tax policy in Benin
Supporting urban planning in Phnom Penh
The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs has offered its expertise to the City of Phnom Penh in Cambodia as it drew up its master plan for 2020.
The main objective was capacity-building for the municipality, in defining, planning and scheduling its planning and urban development policy on its territory and participating in the elaboration of regional development plans. France as, in particular, contributed to the creation of analysis tools and training in project management for supervisors and technicians.
Cidade - Brasil: Supporting the reconditioning of 13 Brazilian city centres
The Cidade - Brasil programme elaborated in partnership between the CAIXA Economica Federal and French Embassy in Brazil provided expertise, between 2001 and 2006, to 13 Brazilian cities in designing renovation projects for their city centres. The latter had become deteriorated and their inhabitants had gradually departed, for lack of adequate investment, in a context of rapid urban growth.
The revitalisation of old city centres, the main component of the project, access to urban services and investment financing are carried out with a view toward sustainable development for the city, aiming to keep the low-income populations on-site. The project is based on an integrated approach taking into account all of the city’s dimensions: housing, public areas, transport, economic activities, planning and urban governance.
Committing for Cities without Slums through Cities Alliance
French Cooperation supports the Cities without Slums Programme run by the Cities Alliance, founded upon the impetus of UN-Housing and the World Bank. The aim is to establish a partnership between the cities, associations of local authorities and all of the players involved in bilateral and multilateral cooperation, with a view toward achieving Target 11 in the Millennium Development Goals: “Achieve significant improvement in lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, by 2020”.
The Cities Alliance, the reference organisation dedicated to this issue, is a project financing tool and a means for support for investment planning, policy reform and regulation systems. It supports sharing of experiences and the elaboration of strategies in a partnership framework, by working alongside local decision-makers as they define a coordinated vision of their cities and improve urban governance.
Supporting dialogue between players around the delivery of local public services
The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs supports the action of the Institute for Delegated Management (IGD) in favour of better local governance on essential services. This corporate foundation informs local authorities about public service management options so that they may choose the methods best-suited to local issues, while upholding the transparency and balance between players involved.
In Southern countries, the IGD takes action in favour of dialogue and coordination between the four major stakeholders involved in managing essential services: central administrations, local authorities, service operators and user associations. The purpose is to clarify each party’s responsibilities and restrictions, develop a shared diagnosis, vision and strategy, concretely manifested in the adoption of a local charter on basic services and a common work programme.
Supporting the participatory programme for urban social development in Mali
The French Embassy in Mali supports the Urban Social Development Programme in the 6 municipalities in Bamako and the urban municipalities of Mopti and Gao. This participatory approach, which brings together the populations of the most underprivileged neighbourhoods in Neighbourhood Development Committees (CQDs), the municipalities and the NGOs, is aimed at improving living conditions and access to basic services for all.
Territorial socio-economic diagnosis and monographic studies of the municipalities and neighbourhoods serve as a foundation for setting up top-priority projects validated by the CQDs, municipal authorities and region governors. Most of them are designed in response to issues with insalubriousness, access to drinking water and economic development. Municipal investment funds are set up and efforts are made to transfer project management to the municipalities. The programme is then assessed and the approach as a whole capitalised upon. To this end, a Geographic Information System (data collection, analysis and cartography) has been set up, serving as a tool that assists municipalities in decision-making.
Above and beyond its impact on local development projects, the PDSU makes it possible to build, in a partnership framework, a lasting participatory approach for defining development priorities and monitoring progress, complementary to the pre-existent process of drawing up municipal development plans and helping strengthen the decentralisation process and the legitimacy of public action.
Supporting Madagascar’s National Land Programme
The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs supports the ambitious National Land Programme (PNF) implemented in 2005. The objective is to provide a rapid response to the populations’ massive demand for land security, at a cost appropriate for the economic setting, by formally stating unwritten land rights and officialising written land deeds. The key is to take into account local practices by seeking alternatives to land securisation, proceeding directly from France’s governance strategy adopted in 2006.
The programme confers extended responsibilities to the municipalities through the creation of municipal offices in charge of issuing land entitlement certificates on which consensus has been secured at the local level - a system that is a major legal innovation. Another aim is to provide the local authorities with territorial and fiscal management tools to serve development. The land management policy is to be conducive to private investment, farming production and the management, protection and renewal of natural resources.
With the overhaul of land and property regulations have come modernisation and restructuring in land services, with a view toward improving the public service provided to those deed holders and other users of the land administration, in particular through the computerisation of land and topographic data.
This land reform is supported by training and communication actions across the territory, aimed at elected officials, agents and land offices, as well as all local players and the Madagascar society. The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, which deploys its expertise on the ground to facilitate the PNF, carries out, in particular, training and capitalisation initiatives as regards the development of rural land policies.
Instituting Urban Land Registries to service local tax policy in Benin
Developed in the country’s main cities, under a bilateral agreement between France and Benin, the Urban Land Registry (RFU) is likened to a “simplified land register”. It is a municipal management tool aimed at improving the local tax resources required to fund urban development actions, by elaborating:
a lot map addressed to the city
an urban database, along with fiscal applications.
The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs is preparing a new project to support decentralisation and local governance, which will make it possible to continue its investments, in particular in favour of building a standing mechanism for monitoring/assessment and support/advice to the RFU. The aim is to provide support to the national thinking process about how to set rental value and the respective roles of the State services (Inland Revenue, Treasury) and the local authorities with regard to local tax policy. The aim is also to validate the use of the RFU as a land and urban management tool.