mobility_transport     Strategic and planning support to rural roads development

                in Burkina Faso

Skat has been mandated, at regular intervals, from 2004 on, to perform appraisal missions, develop operational planning documents, assure the strategic follow-up of the consecutive phases and to backstop the project team of the SDC financed programme “Pistes Rurales – Désenclavement à l’Est (PrEst)” aiming at capacity building of the various sector stakeholders and private sector actors in rural roads development and management through the transfer of competencies and skills in a learning-by-doing approach of rural road construction & maintenance.


Burkina Faso

Project Period:


Services Provided:

Backstopping & Technical Advice

  • Backstopping and monitoring

Name of Staff involved and functions performed:

Project Manager: Roger Schmid

Name of Client:


Description of the Project:

The Government of Burkina Faso has declared the improvement of rural transport a privileged means in its socio-economic development and poverty reduction agenda. In 2002, SDC started the programme “Pistes Rurales – Désenclavement à l’Est (PrEst)” aiming at, in a decennial perspective, the existence in the region of a locally managed and sustainable network of rural roads. Within an action research approach, the PrEst acts since as a catalyst for innovative methods (e.g. labour-based technology, rural roads master planning) and as facilitator.

Implemented by Helvetas, the PrEst in its start-up phase (2002-04) put in place the enabling mechanisms and was able to test the approach during first realisation. The intervention strategy in phase 2 (2004-08) focused then on the transfer of competencies and safeguarding of the investments whilst the new realisations (200 km) and maintenance of the roads were regarded as training tools for the local state, civil society and private sector actors. Due to the topicality and the pertinence of the programme, the current phase 3 (April 2008 – March 2011) capitalizes on the achievements and experiences of the past in search of a scaling up of the approach and for putting in place regional financing mechanisms for rural roads maintenance and construction. Furthermore, the institutionalisation and/or privatisation of the support services provided so far by the project unit of PrEst are engaged throughout this probably last phase of the project.

During the most recent mission in February 2008, Skat supported the local PrEst team in developing the project document for this phase 3 through a stakeholder consultation and participatory planning process.