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Sudan - Options for the sustainable development of the Gezira scheme (Inglês)

The report assesses the main factors which constrain the sustainable development of the Gezira Scheme (GS), to develop medium, to long term plans, including short-term actions, to address those constrains. The GS, is described as a large and complex enterprise, because although it is one the world's largest irrigation systems, it has become one of the least efficient, irrespective of the fact that it uses thirty five percent of Sudan's current allocation of Nile water, producing two-thirds of the country's cotton exports. Following debates on recommendations to convert the GS into a joint stock company, the Government requested the Bank to review, and assess options for the GS sustainability. The report identifies the following problem areas: large debt burden; institutional weaknesses, stemming from a centralized administration, and monopoly service enterprises not financially sustainable; infrastructure, and technical deficiencies; uneconomic production due to low average yields; and, social inequities. Recommendations suggest medium to long term plans for institutional change, through public/private partnerships to establish an independent, privately managed Gezira Authority, who would decentralize managerial activities to competent farmer groups, and, in cooperation with government agencies, would coordinate institutional functions in irrigation, agricultural extension, and market information dissemination.

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