01 Mar 2007
Governance, Policy & Institutional Strengthening
Valuation & Taxation
Posted01 Mar 2007
We indicated in the December 2006 Newsletter that a key issue in our project was the establishment of the National Land Management Authority (NLMA).
The Department of Lands and the Project were transferred to the NLMA in December, and the first three months of 2007 have focused on institutional arrangements. Internal restructuring and staff transfers could significantly impact the capacity building to date, and a challenge for the TA team is to focus on training trainers and rebuilding towards sustainability. NLMA is also responsible for some land management activities and it is seeking to redefine its mandate in consultation with other ministries. More expectations on the TA team!
Another key activity has been the March 2007 Supervision Mission by the World Bank, AusAID and GTZ. Postponed in November 2006, it finally took place over a 2-week period in March 2007. The TA team was pleased to have the Australian Project Director Chris Lunnay with us during the Mission. The focus was on the inevitable change brought by the establishment of NLMA, with a new set of managers with different perspectives and objectives. NLMA also presented the Lao government’s desire to immediately expand the project into eight additional provinces! The Mission agreed to an increase of five provinces over the remaining 18 months of Phase 2.
In view of the expanded project activities and the limited in-country time remaining for most international advisers, the next TA activity will be to design an internal restructuring of TA to cope with the changes. One of the joys of project life is regular assessments and reviews. The second socio-economic impact study is presently being procured. The second Mid-term review of the project will be conducted in November 2007 and then in February 2008 AusAID plans a separate review of TA performance and project outputs.
Provided by Steve McFadzean