Congo Democratic Republic of by bua69970

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									  INSIDER VIEW                                                         SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT TO THE NEW YORK TIMES

                                                                                                              Democratic Republic of

                                                     Democratic Republic of

    WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006

  Peace opens the way to recovery                                                                                                                                                                                FA C T S &
  FORMS, INCLUDING NEW CODES OF PRACTICE IN FORESTRY,                                                                                                                                                              POPULATION
  INVESTMENT AND MINING, ARE GEARING A NATION EN-                                                                                                                                                                60 million (2005 est.)
  BECOME THE POTENT ENGINE OF CENTRAL AFRICA                                                                                                                                                                           CAPITAL
                          WHEN           it      But these riches have played a
                          comes to po- significant part in the conflicts which                                                                                                                                            AREA
                          tential, the De- have rocked the country for the past                                                                                                                                    905,568 sq miles
                          mocratic Re- years and from which it is only now
  public of Congo (DRC) is hard to beginning to emerge. Thirty years of
  equal. At around 905,000 square dictatorship following independence                                                                                                                                            INDEPENDENCE
  miles, the country is bigger than in 1960 left the country, then called                                                                                                                                            30 June 1960
  Western Europe, and has an abun- Zaire, in economic turmoil. Laurent                                                                                                                                               (from Belgium)
  dance of natural resources. Apart Kabila, backed by Rwandan and
  from containing 50 percent of Africa’s Ugandan military forces, took pow-                                                                                                                                      CONSTITUTION
  forests, the DRC is home to one of er in May 1997. War, however, con-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                A new constitution was
  the world’s mightiest river systems, tinued with the armies of neighbor-
  which could, if adequately exploit- ing nations fighting each other over                                                                                                                                      adopted 17 July 2003
  ed, provide hydroelectric power borders, ethnic problems, and ac-
  throughout the entire continent. His- cess to mines.                                                                                                                                                              CURRENCY
  torically, petroleum extraction                       When Laurent Kabila was                                                                                                                                 Congolese franc (CDF)
  and mining of copper,                   The            assassinated in January
  cobalt, diamonds, gold,             DRC holds            2001, his son and for-                                                                                                                                          GDP
  zinc and other base             vast potential: a         mer chief of staff       This year’s democratric elections will be the first since 1960.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               $46.27 billion (2005 est.)
  metals have account- market of 60 million Joseph Kabila took
  ed for about 75 per-
  cent of total export rev-
  enues and 25 percent of
  the country’s GDP.
                              people and land rich over. He now heads a
                                     in natural re-
                                                            multi-party transition
                                                          government prior to the
                                                        country’s first democratic
                                                                                     “The DRC could be one of                                                                                                     GDP per capita
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    $800 (2005 est.)

      The sub-soil is rich in min-                 elections, re-scheduled for be-
  erals too, particularly cobalt and fore the end of June 2006. With help
  copper. Although 90 percent of its from international financial institu-
                                                                                     the richest countries in Africa”                                                                                            GDP real growth
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    6.5% (2005 est.)
  output is industrial-quality, the DRC tions, President Kabila has made             You signed a historic peace ac-           PRESIDENT JOSEPH                      nitely potential and we have to ex-
  is the world’s third-largest diamond progress in establishing peace and            cord in April 2003 under which           KABILA IS RESTORING                    ploit it. Agriculture represents around
  producer by volume. In 2003, di- stabilizing the economic situation,               you remain as head of state dur-                                                50 percent of gross domestic prod-             INDUSTRIES
                                                                                                                               PEACE, DEMOCRACY                                                                    Mining, mineral
  amonds accounted for 70 percent creating the conditions for sustained              ing a transition period of two to                                               uct (GDP), but the problem is that
  of total export revenues. Substantial economic growth. The rewards for             three years. After this, the coun-       AND STABILITY TO THE                   this is not mechanized. We need in-        processing, consumer
  gold deposits and 80 percent of peace are tangible: a vast market of               try’s first democratic elections        COUNTRY AND CUTTING                     vestment and expertise in order to           products, cement
  the world’s reserves of columbite- 60 million people, untold resources             since 1960 will be held. What fur-         BUREAUCRACY TO                       raise the country’s output. We also
  tantalite (coltan), a substance used and, given its strategic position at          ther challenges lie ahead?               MAKE IT ONCE AGAIN                     have potential in oil and petroleum.           NATURAL
  in high-tech appliances such as the very heart of Africa, the poten-                  Joseph Kabila: We need help                                                  Our current production is 30,000
  cell phones, round off the country’s tial to become the continent’s polit-         with the funding of the elections,
                                                                                                                                 ATTRACTIVE FOR
                                                                                                                                                                     barrels per day (bpd) from the off-
  mineral wealth.                             ical center of gravity.                and we are looking to the interna-        FOREIGN INVESTORS                     shore terminals, but with time we         Cobalt, copper, niobium,
                                                                                     tional community for this. The next                                             aim to increase production to               tantalum, petroleum,
                                                                                     big challenges will be to ensure        investment code to cut the red tape     100,000 bpd and more.                          gold, silver, zinc,
                                                                                     peace and security after the elec-      and the bureaucracy that sur-               However, no economic sector           manganese, tin, uranium,
                                                                                     tions, to maintain political and eco-   rounded the creation of companies       can be successful without solid in-       coal, hydropower, timber,
                                                                                     nomic stability, and make sure that     and to make it easier for foreign       frastructure. Under the current World        industrial and gem
                                                                                     development becomes a reality.          companies moving here. We also          Bank program we are rebuilding
                                                                                                                             have a one-stop shop, the Nation-       what has been destroyed by over
                                                                                     The DRC is one of the largest           al Agency for the Promotion of In-      40 years of neglect. This is our main
                                   Dem. Rep.                                                                                                                                                                   SOURCE: CIA - The World Factbook
                                                                                     countries in Africa and has huge        vestments (ANAPI).                      priority and 60 percent of every-
                                   of Congo
                                                                                     economic and natural resources.                                                 thing we have received has gone
                                                                                     What are you looking for in po-         What sectors hold the most po-          into reconstructing roads, bridges
                                                                                     tential investors and what is be-       tential and where do your prior-        and other infrastructure.
                                                                                     ing done to attract them?               ities for reconstruction lie?                                                      AN ONLINE VERSION
                                                                                        The DRC could be one of the              Mining has been one of the          How do you see the future of the            OF THIS REPORT IS
                                                                                     richest countries in Africa but it      DRC’s stronger sectors, but we          DRC?                                          AVAILABLE AT
                                                                                     needs expertise, finance, technol-      need investment, technology and            Our country is potentially the en-
                                                                                     ogy and know-how. We are mak-           long-term experience. For this we’re    gine of Africa. After the elections,              congo
                                                                                     ing the country more attractive for     looking to the U.S., Australia, Cana-   there is nothing to stop Congo from
                                                                                     investors. In 2002 we adopted an        da and South Africa. There is defi-     taking off.

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                                                                                                          Democratic Republic of

 2                                                                                            Congo
                                                                              A clear break from the past
                                                                              AN ENTIRELY REORGANIZED FISCAL SYSTEM, NEW                                     in 13 years, eco-                              The authority of the cen-
                                                                              CODES OF PRACTICE AND RENEWED CENTRAL BANK                                     nomic growth was                           tral bank, vital for econom-
                                                                                                                                                             positive.                                  ic growth, has been estab-
                                                                              CREDIBILITY MARK SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS
                                                                                                                                                                 “The rate of                           lished thanks to continuous
                                                                              IN 2001, Joseph Kabila took on an cility (PRGF) with the IMF. This pro-        growth went up                             auditing over the past five
                                                                              economy crippled by massive trea- gram has provided around $850                from 3.5 percent in                        years and a drive to restore
                                                                              sury deficits and hyperinflation: a million in assistance to the gov-          2002, to 5.7 per-                          discipline, backed by a Ju-
                                                                              result of the unstable socio-politi- ernment to support macroeco-              cent in 2003 and                           ly 2004 law against money-
Voters overwhelmingly approved the new constitution by 84.31%.                cal climate and continued armed nomic stabilization, economic                  6.8 percent in 2004.                       laundering and the financ-
                                                                              conflict in the DRC over the previ- growth and poverty reduction.              This is higher than JEAN-CLAUDE            ing of terrorism.
                                                                              ous ten years. The national cur-           “We managed to stabilize infla-     the demographic MASANGU                        As far as international in-

Momentous times                                                               rency, the Congolese franc (CDF), tion up to December 2004. Re-
                                                                              was depreciating rapidly and pover- cent turbulences are partly due to
                                                                              ty was endemic. But much some unforeseeable military ex-
                                                                                                                                                             rate, which is 3 per- Governor of the
                                                                                                                                                             cent,” says Jean- Central Bank of
                                                                                                                                                             Claude Masangu, Congo
                                                                                                                                                                                                        stitutions are concerned, the
                                                                                                                                                                                                        government has made im-
                                                                                                                                                                                                        portant progress on certain

of peace and                                                                  progress has been made in
                                                                              a relatively short time. The
                                                                              President’s first mea-
                                                                                                                rose from
                                                                                                                            penditure needed to deal with
                                                                                                                               insurgents in the east,”
                                                                                                                                 says Mr. Futa, but also
                                                                                                                                                             Governor of the                            crucial criteria. “The transi-
                                                                                                                                                             central bank. Estimates put GDP tion government has laid the foun-
                                                                                                                                                             at 6.5 percent for 2005. Still, this dations for growth. We have pro-

open elections                                                                sure was to allow the 3.5% to 6.8% in some excessive Con-
                                                                              free circulation of for-
                                                                              eign currencies. His
                                                                                                           only 3 years and golese franc injection
                                                                                                          plans aim to reach
                                                                                                                                   into the country’s
                                                                                                                                                             rate has to be put into perspective, vided new codes for forestry, min-
                                                                                                                                                             since the economy is starting from ing and investment. We have re-
                                                                                                                                                             scratch. “We hope to have a growth organized our entire fiscal system,
                                                                              second was to move                                  economy had a direct       rate of more than ten percent with- including customs and adminis-
TOGETHER WITH THE LARGEST U.N. PEACE-KEEPING                                  from a fixed and over-           10% within a      effect on the currency      in ten years, which I think we can tration, and prepared the ground
MISSION, THE DRC PREPARES ITS FIRST DEMOCRATIC                                valued exchange rate to             decade      rate.” The current transi-     achieve with the support of inter- for economic investors and the pri-
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS FOR MORE THAN 40 YEARS                                 a free and floating exchange                tional government has since        national patrons and donor insti- vate sector,” says Mr. Futa.
                                                                              regime.                                  adopted budgetary restrictions un-    tutions,” says Mr. Masangu.
DESPITE its image of                               to solve security is-          “The first program we put in der IMF pressure to deal with this
civil strife, the DRC has                          sues,” says Olivier        place went so well that the Inter- problem.                                    The central bank in
been struggling just as                            Kamitatu, President of     national Monetary Fund (IMF) and           The main macroeconomic tar-         Kinshasa has
hard for peace. Since                              the National Assembly.     the World Bank decided to assist gets are to raise average annual re-          restored credibility
the war began in Au-                               In 1999, the U.N. Se-      us,” says André-Philippe Futa, for- al GDP growth, keep annual infla-          and transparency to
gust 1998, no less than                            curity Council estab-      mer Minister of Finance, recently tion down, and to increase foreign           the nation’s banking
five peace accords                                 lished an observer mis-    replaced by Marco Banguli. “We reserves. In 2002, for the first time           sector.
have been signed. The                              sion (MONUC) to help       managed to stabilize the macro-
final agreement, signed                            implement the 1999         economic framework, particularly
in Sun City in April OLIVIER                      Lusaka ceasefire            inflation which fell from 500 percent
2003, established a KAMITATU                      agreement, and also to      in 2000 to less than 10 percent in
transitional Govern- President of the             disarm the warring fac-     2004. The exchange rate was sta-
ment of National Unity National                   tions and repatriate        bilized for a long time at around
composed of repre- Assembly                       combatants. This was        CDF240 to the dollar.”
sentatives of the exist-                          followed by the Preto-          Inflation continued to fall sharply
ing DRC government                                ria peace agreement in      from 135 percent at the end of
and rebel groups.                                 December 2002.              2001 to 16 percent only a year lat-
     There are two key                                 As of August last      er. In June 2002, the Kabila gov-
issues at stake: one is                           year, MONUC had             ernment agreed to a three-year
holding the country’s                             repatriated more than       poverty reduction and growth fa-
first democratic elec-                            12,000 people, most-
tions since the early six-                        ly Rwandans. Ac-
ties; the other is getting                        cording to Sherazad
the foreign armed mili- WILLIAM LACY
tias to go home. Voter SWING
                                                  Chida of the DDRRR
                                                  (Disarmament, Demo-
                                                                                 International community backs road to recovery
registration was the first Special Repre-         bilization, Repatriation,       IN A POST-CONFLICT economy,           precedented move, the WB and         basic economic approach.             and obtaining access to the high-
step, and elections are sentative of the          Resettlement, Reinte-           the first source of growth is fund-   the IMF decided to act before the        By the time peace was signed     ly indebted poor countries (HIPC)
on track to be held by U.N. Secretary             gration) program of             ing by donors. When Joseph            peace agreement had been made.       in 2003, Congo had a remark-         initiative. The national budget has
the mid-June deadline. General                    MONUC, even though              Kabila took over the presidency       Aside from the fact that Congo had   ably strong donor coalition be-      been restructured in order to at-
Last December, 15 mil-                            the young soldiers feel         in January 2001, he had the ini-      no internal platform for growth,     hind it. The total international     tain some stronger financial man-
lion out of the country’s 25 million like going home, around 40,000               tiative to bring in assistance even   informal talks with the then rebel   pledge so far is around $5-6 bil-    agement. Corruption has been
registered voters participated in a remained to be repatriated (with              before the war ended. Among his       leaders had led to the conclusion    lion. Assistance has focused pri-    tackled and financial assistance
referendum and approved by estimations of over 10,000 soldiers                    first acts he approached both the     that all parties shared the same     marily on stabilizing the economy    has been provided for the up-
84.31% the introduction of the and about 30,000 relatives).                       World Bank (WB) and the                                                                                         coming elections. A head start
new constitution, in free, fair and       The DRC’s strategic position            International Monetary Fund (IMF)                                                                               was made on infrastructure re-
transparent elections. Furthermore, and huge natural wealth mean that             asking them for help to improve                                                                                 construction with a joint WB and
the DRC entered a historic phase peace here will have profound im-                Congo’s economic situation and                                                                                  EU project to repair the road from
on February 18 with the adoption plications on the rest of the conti-             build up a donor coalition. A joint                                                                             Kinshasa to the port of Matadi.
of its new constitution and national nent, and commitment levels from             observation mission was set up.                                                                                     Besides the continuous efforts
symbols. This paves the way for the international community are                        “What we found in 2001 was                                                                                 to be done, donor institutions re-
the first democratic elections for high. “This is the largest peace-              a country divided and at war.                                                                                   main satisfied with the country’s
more than four decades.                keeping mission in the world,” says        Infrastructures were non-existent,                                                                              progress. The fifth IMF review of
     However, security remains a William Lacy Swing, Special Rep-                 health and education indicators                                                                                 the DRC’s performance under an
problem, particularly in the east- resentative of the U.N. Secretary              were appalling, there was a $14                                                                                 $852.1 million Poverty Reduction
ern provinces where armed groups General. “The country is enjoying                billion debt and the inflation rate                                                                             and Growth Facility (PRGF)
are still at large. “Our mission is to the greatest international support         reached 500 percent,” says Onno                                                                                 arrangement was completed suc-
restore the State Authority in all since independence. We have in-                Rühl, former World Bank repre-                                                                                  cessfully last year, enabling further
the provinces and to set up an in- vested almost $4 billion and have              sentative to the DRC. In an un-        Presidents Kabila and Bush meeting in 2003 to discuss support            assistance to be given.
tegrated and unified army in order more than 18,000 people here.”
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                                                                                                       Democratic Republic of

4                                                                                           Congo
Investment and opportunity
made open and easy
                     ACCORDING to ANAPI, ridical provisions that have been put in place, the
                     there are several good rea- new mining code and the investment code for ex-
                     sons to invest in the DRC. ample. These codes have been made to guaran-
                     The most obvious are the tee the protection of ownership rights by the state,
                     country’s geographical po- and recognize the principle of free trade. More-
                     sition and huge population, over, Congo is a member of the Multilateral In-
                     combining to create poten- vestment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), a World Bank
                     tially vast market opportuni- agency that protects investors against political, non-
                     ties. The country’s varied and commercial risks. But another sure guarantee is
Prof. MATHIAS        abundant natural resources, economic stability, which is being established.
BUABUA WA            including the energy                    President Kabila has faith in economic liber-
KAYEMBE              potential to power            With         alism and a market economy. We are             A growing banking system is being worked on to spur investment, savings and business initiatives.
Managing             most of Africa,          its one-stop        starting to project an image of a coun-
Director of          are another. La-        shop appeal,          try working seriously to make up for lost

ANAPI                bor is plentiful     ANAPI is helping time on the economic front.
                     and cheap, the       businesses to set
economy is expanding, and the new                                  What is ANAPI doing to attract in-
                                            up in less than
government’s economic policies are                               vestment from abroad, particularly
laying the foundations for a secure and         ten days       the U.S.?
promising business sector. ANAPI itself exists                We have created a one-stop shop for the
to provide assistance in all aspects of the invest- administrative processes, helping businesses to
ment process.                                          set up in a week to ten days. We also have a
   Professor Mathias Buabua Wa Kayembe, Man- website and we are traveling a lot. We are plan-
aging Director of ANAPI, answered some ques- ning to go to the U.S., as it is one of our tar-
                                                                                                                Establishing credibility
tions about the organization and its work.

investors confidence in the DRC?
                                                       geted countries. In addition, we hold confer-
                                                       ences and meetings with chambers of com-
What measures are in place to give potential merce, embassies and business consultants.
                                                       However, our main strategy is to work locally to
                                                                                                                and building confidence
Professor Buabua: First of all, you have the ju- improve the business environment here, then to                 A FRESH PERIOD OF STA-                                                          2004 to 2010, will consolidate
                                                       provide information to foreign partners in order         BILITY IS EVIDENT AFTER                                                         monetary policy, improve the cen-
                                                       to attract them to our country.                                                                                                          tral bank’s management system,
                                                                                                                FAR-REACHING MONETARY
                                                                                                                                                                                                reinforce supervision of financial
                                                       What economic sectors provide the most op-               REFORMS AND ENLISTING                                                           intermediaries and improve the
                                                       portunities for potential investors?                     GLOBAL SUPPORT PRO-                                                             payments system.
                                                           With the rise of countries such as China there       DUCE POSITIVE RESULTS                                                               A legal framework will regulate
                                                       is a crisis of raw materials around the world, and                                                                                       banking operations, and the sys-
                                                       we have huge energy and mining potential. In the         THE UNIFIED Congolese franc                                                     tem will be modernized. “Our chal-
                                                       telecommunications sector, we have 60 million            (CDF) was introduced in 1998                                                    lenge is to establish a solid bank-
                                                       people and close to 2 million of these have ac-          during the government of Lau-                                                   ing system,” says the BCC gov-
                                                       cess to phones. There are no fixed lines at pre-         rent Kabila. Initially set at CDF 75                                            ernor. “We now have nine banks,
                                                       sent, which means there is much scope for ex-            to the dollar, the currency expe-                                               which is insufficient if you con-
                                                       pansion. Our soil is fertile and suitable for organ-     rienced problems with the out-                                                  sider the size of our country - at
                                                       ic cultivation. We are surrounded by desert coun-        break of war and subsequent loss                                                present more than 80 percent of
                                                       tries and we could easily become the breadbas-           of reserves. Liberalization of the                                              the monetary mass is outside the
ANAPI is working both locally and globally to          ket of Africa. Basically, opportunities exist across     exchange rate by Joseph Kabila                                                  official channel. We need to in-
provide information and boost enterprise.              the entire economy, and we are here to help.             in 2001 caused an immediate and        Head office of the Banque                troduce internal savings and this
                                                                                                                strong devaluation of the nation-      Commerciale du Congo (BCDC),             implies developing microfinancial
                                                                                                                al currency. By the following year,    the oldest bank in the DRC.              institutions and collective credit

   Investment code highlights                                                                                   the rate had stabilized and re-
                                                                                                                mained relatively so until the be-     change rate of the franc. “Since
                                                                                                                                                                                                ownership,” he adds.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    The Ministry of Finance is work-
                                                                                                                ginning of 2005 when unforeseen        April the country has been enter-        ing closely with the BCC in all as-
   THE NEW INVESTMENT CODE:                            ANAPI’S MISSIONS ARE TO:                                 government expenditures arose          ing a fresh period of stability, which   pects of the banking and finan-
                                                                                                                relating to further conflict in the    will allow us to recuperate the          cial reform. “We encourage the
   q treats all investors equally, both national       q research and promote national and foreign              east of the country and the rate       growth we experienced from 2001          idea of getting our own banking
   and foreign                                         investments                                              plummeted once more.                   to 2004,” says Mr. Masangu.              sector,” says André-Philippe Fu-
   q guarantees property rights                        q agree investment projects under the                        “Such important variations are        Ultimately, any central bank          ta, the former Minister of Finance.
   q grants freedom to remit revenues and              investment code, subject to particular laws              not appreciated either by busi-        needs to establish its credibility.      “We experienced a period during
   dividends abroad                                    such as the mining or banking laws                       nessmen, the government, or the        The BCC has achieved this by             which there were no banks func-
   q safeguards investments from the                   q provide a range of services to investors               World Bank,” says Jean-Claude          successfully performing its two          tioning, so we decided to liquidate
   possibility of nationalization or expropriation     under a one-stop shop system, including                  Masangu, Governor of the Con-          main responsibilities: introducing       three of them. But we wish to
   q provides tax incentives for new                   obtaining permits, providing project analysis            golese Central Bank (BCC). Mon-        monetary reform and enlisting            bring more banks into the DRC.
   investments of public utility                       and offering technical advice                            etary and budgetary measures           support for its efforts from for-        In order for them to come, we
   q simplifies and speeds up the investment           q eliminate any barriers and bureaucratic                were taken in February 2005 to         eign partners, namely the WB and         need to create a macroeconom-
   process                                             obstacles to the creation, extension and                 correct the currency’s volatility.     the IMF. In addition, a law is be-       ic framework which gives confi-
   q provides for the training of staff to fulfil      modernization of businesses                              Following guidance from the            ing elaborated to establish the          dence; in other words, a Con-
   technical and specialized functions in the          q make information available on rules and                World Bank (WB), the govern-           bank’s independence.                     golese currency that is stable
   new investment environment                          regulations relating to tax and other issues             ment cut all unnecessary budget           The BCC has also published a          enough to build a bank on.” As
   q aims to computerize all customs                   on investments                                           expenditure and the BCC stopped        strategy program outlining the           the ex-minister further explains,
   procedures to reduce import and export              q create a database on the potential and                 issuing notes. These policies          problems facing the banking and          “If the domestic private sector
   times                                               opportunities for investment in the DRC                  achieved their interim objective,      financial sectors. This strategic        can be made to trust the system,
                                                                                                                which was to improve the ex-           development plan, scaled from            foreign investment will follow.”
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                                                                                                                 Democratic Republic of

                                                                                                    Congo                                                                                           5
A new energy and optimism in the banking sector
THE IMPORTANCE OF A SOLID BANKING SECTOR HAS                                     the Southern African Development        throughout the years, is the                       l’Afrique au Congo (BIAC),
FAR FROM BEEN OVERLOOKED BY THE GOVERNMENT,                                      Community (SADC), and is taking         Banque Commerciale du Con-                              have continued to in-
                                                                                 part in the project for the normal-     go (BCDC). Providing both per-                             vest despite the
                                                                                 ization and standardization of pay-     sonal and corporate banking ser-                             crises, introduc-
ONE of the main challenges faced by the late 80s due to various rea-             ment terms within the Southern          vices, the BCDC, as well as the                                ing technologi-
by the country’s central bank, in sons, including the freezing and               African region. With these renewed      Banque Internationale pour                                       cal advances
conjunction with its international loss of their investments into gov-                                                                                                                     such as a
partners such as the World Bank ernment bonds (decreed by the                                                                                                                              satellite com-
and the African Development Bank, central bank in 1992 and never re-                                                                                                                        munications
is the recovery of people’s trust in paid). The formal banking sector                                                                                                                       system and
the system and to keep the wheels was composed of under-capitalized                                                                                                                        internet bank-
of the economy rolling. Past years yet over-liquid banks operating in                                                                                                                     ing. BCDC in-
of conflict, political uncertainty, de- a very tight market, with a low in-                                                                                                              cludes among
struction of infrastructure, lack of termediation ratio of 14 percent                                                                                                                  its clients the
data, and above all endemic                and limited adherence to the                                                                                                               Central Coordina-
poverty have resulted in a                       BCC’s regulations.                                                                                                                tion Office (BCECO),
high percentage – up to                The              The importance of a                                                                                                     which works with the
95 percent according            central bank is       solid banking system in                                                                                              World Bank to manage for-
to some sources – of          a member of the          the country has by no     Banks are                                                                           eign donor funds.
financial and com- project to standard- means been over-                         working hard to                                                                        A newcomer to the banking
mercial transactions ize payments in the looked by the gov-                      regain people’s                                                                     scene, the Trust Merchant Bank
in the DRC taking place       southern African ernment. A law for co-            trust and                                                                           opened in January 2005 in Lubum-
on an informal basis.                region         operatives was passed        encouraging the                                                                     bashi and provides microfinancing
    The banking sector in                        in 2002 and a banking law       use of their                                                                        as well as traditional banking ser-
particular needs to work hard to           has been established that defines     services for both                                                                   vices. According to Robert Levi, the
regain its position in the country but the legal status and obligations of       savings and                                                                         bank’s CEO, Congolese busi-
reforms are taking place with en- all financial intermediaries. Plans for        enterprise.                                                                         nessmen are only now starting to
couraging signs in the sector with modernization for the future also                                                                                                 deal with banks rather than keep
the arrival of foreign investors such include the introduction of auto-          dynamics, the banking sector is                                                     their savings under the mattress.
as Citibank, Stanbic and Rawbank. mated teller machines. The BCC                 looking to a positive future.                                                       The process is a mutual education,
Traditionally dominated by the co- conducts its activities in the bank-             One of the country’s oldest                                                      and the traditional negative rela-
operative movement, the number ing sector with other African cen-                and most prestigious banks,                                                         tionship between people and
of these agencies had dwindled tral banks, particularly members of               which has maintained its position                                                   banks is being overturned.

    Ideal for microfinance initiatives
    In many ways, the DRC has the         financial liberalization has helped   opened for business in January
    perfect conditions for the            to bring in international financial   last year, was created in order
    introduction of local microfinance    intermediaries such as the            to satisfy the demand for small
    initiatives (MFI). Its Government     Foundation for International          credits among the Congolese
    of National Unity brings together     Community Assistance (FINCA),         people. “I thought that this was
    officials     from        previous    so paving the way for increased       the only formula that could
    governments, rebel groups, and        provision of financial services to    contribute to raising our country
    representatives from civil society,   the Congolese population.             out of poverty,” says Roberto
    and is consolidating behind the           In an environment operated        Levi, the bank’s CEO. While he
    notions of peace, progress and        largely by the informal economy       is aware of the high risks involved
    economic stability. After a decade-   and where the public’s trust in       in setting up an MFI, Mr. Levi
    long recession, the country is        financial intermediaries is           combined this part of the bank’s
    experiencing modest economic          extremely low, there is a pressing    activities with a conventional
    growth and inflation has been         need to start money circulating.      banking department, and after
    brought under control. A start on     The Trust Merchant Bank, which        a year is able to say that the
                                                                                enterprise is successful.
                                                                                    What might seem absurdly
                                                                                low amounts to someone from
                                                                                Europe or the U.S. are often
                                                                                enough to get a small business
                                                                                or cottage industry up and
                                                                                running. The Trust Merchant
                                                                                Bank lends between $50 and
                                                                                $200, mostly to women, and
                                                                                enjoys a repayment rate of
                                                                                around 100 percent. “We
                                                                                encourage our customers to
                                                                                save money on a regular basis,”
                                                                                says Mr. Levi. “After the first cycle
                                                                                we can increase the loans. We
                                                                                want our customers to become
                                                                                micro-entrepreneurs,” he adds.
                                                                                    In a context of political,
                                                                                economic and social recovery,
                                                                                the development of the
                                                                                microfinance sector takes time,
                                                                                and success depends on long-
                                                                                term commitment. “Any
                                                                                institution can come and
                                                                                succeed here if they decide to
    Loans of between $50 and $200 enable local entrepreneurs,                   cooperate with the local people,”
    mostly women, to get started and aid in the DRC’s recovery.                 says Mr. Levi.
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                                               WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006                                                                         SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                                         Democratic Republic of

 6                                                                                                           Congo
                                                                                                      The Inga hydroelectric

                                                                                                             power facility is
                                                                                                          already one of the
                                                                                                         biggest sources of
                                                                                                        energy in Africa, yet
                                                                                                       running at only 2.5%
                                                                                                         of its real capacity.

Making DRC the
powerhouse of Africa
UNTOLD POSSIBILITIES IN HYDROELECTRIC POWER                                             commissioned in 1972 and Inga II in
                                                                                        1980; equipment is out of date and
GENERATION THANKS TO THE MIGHTY CONGO RIVER                                             run down. In terms of obstacles,
AND VAST AS YET UNTAPPED OIL RESERVES ARE WAIT-                                         most of them are related to financial
ING TO BE EXPLOITED                                                                     constraints, and Mr. di Panzu be-

                                                                                        lieves the solution to redeveloping
IN ADDITION to significant, as yet un-            With a hydropower potential of the site and increasing production is
developed oil reserves (with 6 per-           100,000MW - and 44,000MW alone to negotiate with donors or to cre-                         development of Inga III (3,500MW)            company faces the challenge of up-
cent of Africa’s total oil reserves), the
DRC has one of the greatest sources
of natural energy in the world: the
                                              at a single site on the Inga river - ate public-private partnerships.
                                              most of the energy production is              In June last year, SNEL signed a
                                              concentrated at the Inga hydroelec- $9 million agreement with Canadian
                                                                                                                                         and an initial stage of a fourth plant
                                                                                                                                         Grand Inga (29,000MW). The Inga
                                                                                                                                         site can be expanded at relatively
                                                                                                                                                                                      dating its equipment, both at the
                                                                                                                                                                                      consumer end (only 10 percent of
                                                                                                                                                                                      customers have access to meters)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                IN BRIEF
Congo River. Second in size only to
the Amazon River, the Congo has the
                                              tric facility in the southwest of the firm MagEnergy for the refurbish-
                                              country, about 150 miles from Kin- ment of at least one turbine current-
                                                                                                                                         low cost and without any significant
                                                                                                                                         environmental impact due to con-
                                                                                                                                                                                      and at the production level (new high-
                                                                                                                                                                                      tension lines are needed to meet ris-    A force to be
potential of supplying hydroelectric
power not only for its own country’s
                                                  Mr. di Panzu explained
                                                                                                     ly installed at Inga II. First
                                                                                                     energy revenues are ex-
                                                                                                                                         sistently high water volumes and the
                                                                                                                                         run-of-river type of installation. While
                                                                                                                                                                                      ing demand in the capital alone).
                                                                                                                                                                                          Other issues, such as non-pay-       reckoned with
needs and those of the region, but            that Inga is the largest sin-                          pected by the end of                the plant currently supplies power to        ment of debts and the theft of elec-     The Inga hydro site is the most
also via power highways north, south,         gle hydropower initiative                              2006 and all four turbines          Kolwezi and Brazzaville in the DRC,          tricity, are pressing for the company,   powerful in the world,
east and west to the farthest corners         in the world, with the po-                             should be in full produc-           Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe and                 which is in real need of better-man-     comparable with Three Gorges
of the continent and even beyond to           tential        to     reach                            tion by 2009. Minister of           South Africa, the successful com-            aged operations. “I found the com-       in China. It is an essential
Europe.                                       50,000MW of electricity.                               Energy Salomon Bana-                pletion of Inga III to its full capacity     pany was in a very bad position and      source of energy in Central and
    However, even though the DRC              Today, Inga currently con-                             muhere said, “This reha-            could potentially see pollutant-free         immediately set up a commission to       Southern Africa, and provides
has 60 percent of Africa’s hydro-             sists of two stations: In-                             bilitation agreement                power supplied to Western Africa as          develop a rescue and recovery plan,”     power to Kinshasa and other
electric potential, only 7 percent of         ga I (six turbines of 52MW VIKA DI PANZU               marks a crucial step in             far as Nigeria, North Africa and the         says CEO Vika di Panzu. “But there       parts of western DRC.
the country’s population has access           each) and Inga II (eight CEO of SNEL                   the expansion of our en-            whole of Southern Africa. This would         is also a true need for technology       Supplying nearly one-third of
to electricity. It will require massive de-   turbines of 178MW each),                               ergy production to meet             generate capacity for the creation of        transfer. We need foreign experts to     the electricity consumed by
velopment and financial support to            for a total potential of 1774MW. Due the growing needs of the DRC and                      a new regional electricity export            work with us and we are developing       neighboring Republic of Congo,
make sure that within 20 years the            to years of low demand and low those of the Southern and Central                           scheme, the Western Power Corri-             partnerships.”                           Inga also exports power to
country “will be supplying reliable           maintenance budgets, Inga I and II African region.” SNEL CEO Mr. di                        dor (Westcor). Furthermore, the                  Over the next five years the com-    Zambia, Zimbabwe and South
power internally and externally               currently produce only about 700MW. Panzu added, “We are very pleased                      Grand Inga scheme would be the               pany will continue to be reformed,       Africa. A power mega-project
throughout Africa at low cost and to          This total is only 2.5 percent of its ac- that after many years of discussions             largest generating facility in Africa at     separating the production and dis-       foresees increasing energy
the satisfaction of customers,” as            tual capacity, with only one turbine we can now plan on the successful                     39,000MW.                                    tribution segments to improve man-       production at Inga by
per the vision of Vika di Panzu, CEO          working at the moment.                    rehabilitation of our country’s most                 SNEL’s main aims are to provide          agement and raise productivity, and      rehabilitating plants I and II at an
of the national electricity company So-           Plans to rehabilitate the stations important energy installation.”                     reliable and affordable energy to its        also look at increasing exports and      estimated cost of $550m,
ciété Nationale d’Electricité (SNEL).         have existed for a while. Inga I was          Plans are also under way for the             customers. At the moment, the state          generating profits.                      building a third plant at the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               same Nkokolo Valley site, and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               creating a fourth, bigger
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               generating plant, Grand Inga, at
      Regideso aims to make clean drinking water accessible to all                                                                                                                                                             an estimated cost of $50bn and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               an output of 39,000MW.
      IT SEEMS ironic that a country centers.                                                                                                                                       larger centers that were
      so rich in water resources should        The years of conflict since
      not be able to supply all its 1996 have taken their toll on the
                                                                                                                                                                                    destroyed or damaged during
                                                                                                                                                                                    the war, in order to ensure a
      citizens with clean water. The company and its installations,
      DRC’s river network stretches and it is only now beginning to
                                                                                                                                                                                    minimum production and
                                                                                                                                                                                    increase supply rates from 60 to
      across the whole country, and re-establish normal management                                                                                                                  90 percent. Improvement works              Inga Falls on the Congo River
      even the smallest villages and and administration practices. In                                                                                                               will start in Kinshasa and other           has a potential generating
      most remote areas are not far 2004 the firm produced its first                                                                                                                large cities because investment            capacity that equals that of all
      from a source. But at the moment financial statement in seven                                                                                                                 here can be recovered more                 Southern African countries put
      only around 46 percent of                   years. War damage means                                                                                                           easily, freeing up capital to invest       together. With its huge potential
      the population has               The           that only 55 of the 94                                                                                                         in more out-of-the-way areas.              for producing hydroelectric
      access to clean             repair of vital      water treatment plants                                                                                                       Only in about five years’ time             power, the DRC has a key role to
      water, according to      infrastructure will      are still functioning,                                                                                                      can the company begin to think             play in regional development. As
      the UNDP in 2002.       make an essential and investment is                                                                                                                   of opening new centers. In the             a member of the Southern
          Regideso is the                                needed if production                                                                                                       long term, it may be possible to           African Power Pool (SAPP), the
                                improvement to
      company in charge                                 and distribution are                                                                                                        export water to other countries.           country is taking part in the
      of the treatment,        health and social to return to normal                                                                                                                   Rapidly swelling urban                  Southern African Power Market
      distribution        and      conditions       levels.                                                                                                                         populations provide Regideso               Project. In light of Africa’s
      marketing of water in the                    The company is aided by                                                                                                          with its biggest challenge.                growing energy needs, this
      DRC. A state-owned monopoly, the World Bank, the EU and the                                                                                                                   Kinshasa, for example, now has             project will create favorable
      it saw spectacular growth in the African Development Bank                                                                                                                     an estimated 7.5 million                   conditions for increased
      80s partly because of the rapid (ADB).             Total      proposed                                                                                                        inhabitants, while the network             investment in the power sector.
      urbanization of the population, expenditure for rehabilitation and                                                                                                            only has the capacity to supply            Financed primarily by the World
      and partly thanks to external development projects has risen                                                                                                                  water to half of them. The                 Bank, it should run until 2009.
      investment resulting from the to $620m, and although donors                                                                                                                   company aims to provide a more             The DRC will benefit from the
      International Decade of Clean and investors together have                                                                                                                     evenly distributed supply,                 strengthening of existing
      Drinking Water, set up from 1981 agreed to provide this, the money                                                                                                            ensuring that everyone has at              electricity transmission networks
      to 1990. By the 90s, Regideso may not be forthcoming until                                                                                                                    least some access to water,                and the construction of a high-
      was operating 94 water after the elections this year.                                 From its headquarters in Kinshasa, Regideso’s strategy is to                            making a significant stride in             tension line to increase the
      treatment and distribution               The priority is to reactivate the            reopen its war-damaged water treatment plants.                                          health and social terms.                   transmission capacity from the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Inga facility to the SAPP.
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                                   WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006                                                                SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                            Democratic Republic of

 10                                                                                              Congo
  An up-to-date
  geological survey of
                                                                                                                                                                    Reinventing the
  the DRC would
  pinpoint its vast
  resources of
                                                                                                                                                                    copper belt as
  unearthed riches.
                                                                                                                                                                    catalyst of
                                                                                                                                                                     KATANGA IS THE ‘STATE WITHIN A STATE’ AND THE
                                                                                                                                                                     RICHEST AND MOST ECONOMICALLY DYNAMIC
                                                                                                                                                                     PROVINCE IN THE COUNTRY
                                                                                                                                                                     A TERRITORY of close to 192,000          out as well as significant fishing
                                                                                                                                                                     square miles, Katanga is almost          activities.

A wealth of minerals lie                                                                                                      The new code has also provid-
                                                                                                                          ed Adastra Minerals with a prop-
                                                                                                                          er legal framework to negotiate
                                                                                                                          from, allowing a new deal to be
                                                                                                                                                                     the size of France and represents
                                                                                                                                                                     more than 20 percent of the na-
                                                                                                                                                                     tional territory. With its vast de-
                                                                                                                                                                     posits of copper, cobalt, tin, ra-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Today, besides the separatism
                                                                                                                                                                                                              movements of the past, the
                                                                                                                                                                                                              province is fully part of the DRC’s
                                                                                                                                                                                                              future, and even more so as its

in the heart of Africa                                                                                                    struck with Gecamines, the state-
                                                                                                                          owned mining company, and the
                                                                                                                          government. So far the firm has in-
                                                                                                                          vested around $40m, and aims to
                                                                                                                                                                     dium, uranium, and diamonds,
                                                                                                                                                                     Katanga province in the southeast
                                                                                                                                                                     is the richest in the DRC, and one
                                                                                                                                                                     of the most economically dynamic.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              mining resources are meant to
                                                                                                                                                                                                              boost the economic relaunch of
                                                                                                                                                                                                              the country. The copper belt re-
                                                                                                                                                                                                              gion staged a number of projects
SIGNIFICANT REFORMS WITH A NEW CODE AND CLEAR                                 serves, not to mention gold and             invest half as much again in the           Katanga borders Angola to the            in 2005 that make the region sec-
GUIDELINES ARE ALREADY LEADING TO POSITIVE CHANGES                            diamonds.                                   short term.                                southwest and Zambia to the              ond to the DRC’s capital in terms
                                                                                 Anvil Mining, a copper and sil-              The new legislation takes into         southeast, with Lake Tanganyika          of new projects. Better still, the
AND ATTRACTING AMBITIOUS PRIVATE VENTURES                                     ver producer, is one of them. They          account the potential harm that            separating it from Tanzania to the       province together with neighbor-
THE DRC has always relied on            cluding grants, transfers and can- operate the Dikulushi Mine, which              mining can do to the environ-              east. Lubumbashi, its capital city,      ing Zambia, is booming thanks to
minerals for the bulk of its export     cellations, and stimulate invest- is the first mining project in the              ment. Each applicant must prove            was named “Capital of Hope” by           the soaring prices of copper on
revenues. “The mining sector is of      ment in the sector.                   DRC to receive political risk insur-        to the relevant authorities that           Unesco. In addition to its subsoil       the world market.
the utmost importance to the coun-          “The fact that we are function- ance cover from the Multilateral              they have an adequate environ-             riches, the province contains the            Signs of better times are un-
try’s economic recovery,” says In-      ing at all today is mainly thanks to Investment Guarantee Agency (MI-             mental rehabilitation plan. But be-        fertile Katanga Plateau where            missable in the region. Long
gele Ifoto, Minister of Mines. Cer-     private investors,” says the minis- GA), a member of the World Bank               yond all the efforts, James Tid-           farming and ranching are carried         stretches of trucks filled with
tainly, renewed activity in the min-    ter. Undoubtedly, the                            Group. The group’s pos-          marsh, a Swiss-based lawyer rep-
ing sector could help to boost GDP      recent years of conflict                         itive results are a good         resenting several mining projects
growth. But first the sector itself     and political instability                        sign for prospective in-         in the DRC, strikes through a
needs to be given a jump-start, and     have kept many away.                             vestors.                         word of caution. He says that
significant reforms are already lead-   Mr. Ifoto estimates that                             Same thing for               simply adopting a new law mod-
ing to positive changes.                $1.5 billion needs to                            Comisa/First Quantum, a          eled on an international template
    A new mining code, issued in        be injected into the                             Canadian copper-min-             is not enough. “Continued effort
2002 with World Bank backing,           sector, partly to reno-                          ing company that has             will be required over many years
means to create a transparent and       vate out-of-date equip-                          seen its initial $7m in-         to implement the new rules. Men-
equitable set of rules for minerals     ment, but also to pro- INGELE IFOTO              vestment in the DRC in-          talities need to change and that
investment, covering the prospect-      vide local technical and Minister of Mines crease to $30m, and is                 will take time. Courthouses need
ing, exploration, exploitation, pro-    professional training.                           continuing exploration           to be built; civil servants and
cessing, transportation and sale of     Also pressing is an up-to-date ge- activities. According to CEO Matt              judges trained.” But he recog-
minerals as well as setting clear       ological survey of the country. There Pascal, the new mining code has             nizes that the process has begun
guidelines on financing procedures      is a real need to assess the po- been a vast improvement. In his                  and that in the years since its
and taxation. “We now have a sin-       tential of the mining resources. opinion, the more investors come                 adoption, the mining code has
gle office where all payments can       Current knowledge is limited be- to the DRC, the better the region                dramatically stabilized the regu-
be made and licenses can be             cause of outdated exploration da- will be for future investment.                  latory environment.
obtained,” says the min-                ta that was left by the Belgians in
ister. In reference                     the sixties. But with the use of
to the reopen-
ing of the min-
ing registry
                                         modern technology, there could
                                           be some great improvements.
                                               The mining code, coupled
                                                                                      Katanga: time to grow again
(CAMI),                                    with improved political stability,     GOVERNOR NGOY has a vision                                                    priority at the moment is to or-         How do you see Katanga’s eco-
whose mis-                                  is beginning to attract mining        for 2010: to establish peace and                                              ganize a geological survey that will     nomic development over the
sion is to                                   companies back to a country          start attracting more investors to                                            allow us to map Katanga’s re-            next few years?
record mining                                rich in copper, cobalt, zinc,        the province. Provided there is                                               sources. The maps we are cur-                For the time being, Katanga
rights, in-                                     uranium, tin and iron re-         peace, in five years Katanga should                                           rently relying on date from the          province must rely on revenues
                                                                                  be able to regain its position as the                                         colonial period, at the latest from      from mining activities in order to
The                                                                               DRC’s economic engine.                                                        independence in 1960.                    develop its economy. But we do
Ministry of                                                                                                                                                                                              not want to neglect agriculture, as
Mines in                                                                            The DRC is often referred to as                                             What advantages has the new              a reinvigorated sector would do
Kinshasa                                                                            a geological scandal. What are                                              mining code brought?                     a lot to improve living standards.
is making                                                                           Katanga’s resources?                                                           One of the main advantages            If we can attract more mining in-
progress                                                                            Dr. Kisula Ngoy: With regard to                                             for investors is the possibility to      vestment we will also invest in
with                                                                                exploited resources, Katanga pro-                                           recover their capital outlay while       farming.
sweeping                                                                            duces copper, cobalt, tin, man-                                             exploiting. Investors include Anvil          Also, we need to organize the
changes.                                                                            ganese, cassiterite and coltan.                                             Mining in the east, and First Quan-      country’s structures, giving
                                                                                    Back in the colonial period, Bel-       URBAIN KISULA NGOY                  tum-owned Compagnie Miniere              provinces more responsibility for
                                                                                    gium discovered that the copper         Governor of the                     de Sakania (COMISA) in the               local matters. If all revenues were
                                                                                    deposits spread over an 800km           Province of Katanga                 south-east.                              collected locally and we could ad-
                                                                                    area from Sakania to the center                                                The mining code will also allow       ministrate expenditures, it would
                                                                                    of the province, but these are as      province after prospecting, and      the province to obtain funds which       be an improvement. A decen-
                                                                                    yet not exploited. Some miner-         in the north we have gold, ex-       contribute to raising the living stan-   tralized system would mean we
                                                                                    als such as coltan are specific to     ploited only by small-scale pro-     dards of the local population. This      could manage our own economy,
                                                                                    Katanga. Diamonds were dis-            duction operations, as we have       was not the case previously, as Kin-     giving more control and ensuring
                                                                                    covered in the west of the             no investors as yet. Our major       shasa collected all royalties.           a more efficient management.
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                                                                SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                                 11                                    11

Investment, especially in mining as it is the biggest sector, would get the wheels of the economy
rolling and raise employment opportunities for the Congolese people.

minerals line up to cross the bor-         Kabila’s time as president, local        wards due to decades of mis-
der at Kasumbalesa every day. In           groups were armed to defend them-        management. Nevertheless, min-
the city center, the number of new         selves from invasive forces. Known       ing activities are ongoing, and for-
cars is increasing every month; vil-       as the Mai-Mai, some of these            eign companies are acting on the
las are being renovated in the resi-       groups are now resisting the na-         province’s potential. Governor
dential area, while infrastructure pro-    tional demobilization process, caus-     Kisula Ngoy hopes that the World
jects are sprouting up in the outskirts.   ing outbreaks of fighting particular-    Bank supported restructuring of
   Katanga has not emerged un-             ly in the northeast of the province.     the country’s major mining outfit,
scathed from the DRC’s more wide-              Production of copper and cobalt      Gecamines, will help reinvigorate
spread civil conflicts. During Laurent     plummeted from the mid-80s on-           the local economy.

National mining giant offers
capacity for expansion
A PROUD HISTORY AND AN ENTERPRISING FUTURE,                                         world. At the height of its operations,
GECAMINES HAS SEVERAL MAJOR PROJECTS ON THE                                         Gecamines was the sole instigator
                                                                                    of social development in the region,
                                                                                    opening schools, hospitals and can-
THE HISTORY of Katanga province            says Nzenga Kongolo, the former          teens to care for the workers and
is irrevocably linked with that of what    CEO of Gecamines. “It is a matter        their families.
used to be one of the world’s ma-          of pride for us.”                            Unfortunately, the production was
jor copper mining operations,                 A few years after independence        not used rationally to develop the
Gecamines. Under Belgian colonial          was obtained in 1960, the company        mining industry. Towards the end of
rule, extensive copper and cobalt          was nationalized, renamed Générale       Mobutu’s regime, he alone man-
deposits were discovered here, and         des Carrières et des Mines, and          aged all the company’s funds, mis-
the Belgians wasted no time in set-        started producing even more. By          using them for other purposes. In
ting up what was then the Upper            the 80s, it was reaching annual pro-     addition, production equipment was
Katanga Mining Union. Production           duction levels of almost 500,000         not renovated and fell into disrepair.
went on apace and revenues were            tonnes of copper and 17,000              Today, Gecamines is producing at
substantial. “Part of Belgium was          tonnes of cobalt, making it the fifth-   less than 10% of its capacity, and
built with money from the Congo,”          largest copper producer in the           installations have not been proper-
                                                                                    ly maintained for over 15 years.
                                                                                        But the reserves are still there.
                                                                                    Gecamines has calculated that they
                                                                                    can continue to extract copper for
                                                                                    at least the next 50 years with cer-
                                                                                    titude, possibly for the next 75 or
                                                                                    100. Much of current production is
                                                                                    surface mining, and the potential
                                                                                    for the subsoil could be even big-
                                                                                    ger, needing only an updated sur-
                                                                                    vey and exploitation campaign.
                                                                                        Although Gecamines turned to
                                                                                    the private sector in 1995, the coun-
                                                                                    try’s civil war put many projects on
                                                                                    hold. The advent of new legislation
                                                                                    in 2002 and the establishment of a
                                                                                    transitional government in 2003
                                                                                    opened the way for Gecamines to
                                                                                    start negotiating with foreign mining
                                                                                    companies to establish partnerships
                                                                                    and joint ventures. The company
There are several joint-venture projects with private
investors in progress.                                                                        Continued on page 12
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                          WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006                                                           SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                   Democratic Republic of

12                                                                                      Congo
National mining
giant offers
                                                                                                            Leading by example to
capacity for                                                                                                increase economic activity
expansion                                                                                                  GEORGE FORREST INTERNATIONAL S.A. HIGHLIGHTS                                     bashi. Today, that factory is pro-
                                                                                                                                                                                            ducing 3,000 tonnes of cobalt a
                                                                                                           THE REAL ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL POTENTIAL IN
Continued from page 11                                                                                                                                                                      year.” Another joint project with Chi-
                                                                                                           VARIOUS SECTORS, THE COUNTRY AND ITS PEOPLE
                                                                                                                                                                                            na and OM Group in Kinsenda in-

has several major projects on the                                                                          THE FORREST GROUP was orig- with state company Gecamines to                      volves building a high technology
go. One of them is the Kasombo                                                                             inally founded in 1922 as a trans- start extracting cobalt from the Ko-          $60m factory for the production of
project with George Forrest Inter-                                                                         port company in Katanga province. sombo quarry,” says Mr. Forrest.               cobalt and copper salts.
national, and that has been fol-    Copper extraction could continue for at least another 50 years.        By 1933 it had started extracting Since the new mining code was in-                 “Now we are focused on the
lowed by the Kamoto joint agree-                                                                           minerals, in particular copper, man- troduced and the transitional gov-          Minière Musoshi Kinsenda (MMK)
ment signed in August                          pected to provide so- partnerships could bring in new       ganese and gold, and in the early ernment was established, the com-              project near the Zambian border,
2005. Another is Tenke                         cial infrastructures. technology and give value to a        50s it embarked on several civil en- pany has continued to invest in var-        where we have invested around
Fungurume, which is                            This, he says, is a job structured economic develop-        gineering projects such as                     ious extractive projects.         $42m and where we expect to ex-
considered to be one of                        for the government. ment, rigorously controlled by the      Kolwezi airport. It is one           With             “We work with Amer-        tract around 50,000 tonnes of cop-
the world’s largest un-                        Thanks to the new state within a fiscal framework           of a rare breed of com-         an extensive        ican partner OM Group,       per annually,” says the company
developed copper de-                           mining code, the state that is organized and stable.”       panies that continues river network and the world’s leading                      president. In a recent transaction,
posits with the potential                      should be able to re-      “We confirm that we have im-     to create employment                                  cobalt firm, and           Copper Resources Corporation
                                                                                                                                      fertile soil, agribusi-
to reach annual produc-                        ly on income from du- portant mineral resources but that    in the country. Direct-                               Gecamines on the STL       (CRC) entered into a Memorandum
tion of 400,000 tonnes.                        ties paid by private we have problems of financing          ly or indirectly, George      ness investment coke oven project,                 of Understanding to acquire 75 per-
This is jointly owned with                     mining companies. and management. If we work to-            Forrest International S.A. would reap great which exploits slagheap              cent of MMK. In exchange for the
Tenke Mining and U.S. NZENGA                  This in turn should al- gether with American or other in-    provides jobs for around           rewards       rejections from the             75 percent shareholding, CRC will
giant Phelps Dodge. An- KONGOLO               low them to make im- vestors, we will surely succeed.”       10,000 people in the country                  Gecamines site in Lubum-           issue more than 18.5 million new
other project is DCP, op- Former CEO of       provements, thus at- Mr. Kongolo is convinced that           and new investments in the pipeline                                               shares so that the Forrest Group
erated with GEC Group, Gecamines              tracting ever more in- the presence of large multina-        could easily double this figure. The                                                  will become CRC’s largest
and KMT is a project they                     vestment. “If it devel- tional companies in Katanga          company’s activities in the DRC are                                                    shareholder.
have negotiated with ADASTRA. ops the mining industry, a well- would be a guarantee of the sus-            still mainly centered in Katanga.
Gecamines also has several other organized state will have suffi- tainability of the peace process,             In 1986, George Forrest took                                                          Currently providing jobs
significant projects in progress.  cient financial means,” he says.    helping to enable economic de-      control of the company. “I came                                                            for 10,000 people in the
    Mr. Kongolo, the former CEO,      “What is important is to suc- velopment and reduce poverty           back to mining, producing five mil-                                                           country, this number
is careful to stress that private ceed in giving value to the DRC’s even while they continue to make       lion cubic meters a year until the po-                                                          could easily double
companies should not be ex- natural reserves. Public-private a profit.                                     litical situation forced us to stop. It                                                     from new investments
                                                                                                           was not until 1994-1995 that we                                                                     in the pipeline .
                                                                                                           were able to sign our first contract

                                                                                                              Diamond opportunities as certification
                                                                                                              and new legislation shape the market
   NOT JUST A NORMAL HOTEL                                                                                     THE ONLY commercial diamond            and the break-even point of eight    deplore this type of small-scale
                                                                                                               producer in the DRC is the Bak-        million carats should be exceed-     production because of its lack of
                                                                                                               wanga Mining Company (MIBA),           ed by the end of this year.          organization and the fact that it in-
                                                                                                               a joint venture operation between          Although the DRC is Africa’s     volves children,” says Gustave Lu-
                                                                                                               Belgian company Sibeka and the         largest diamond producer, most       abeya, CEO of MIBA. It is esti-
                                                                                                               DRC government, which holds an         of the country’s diamonds are pro-   mated that the treasury loses about
                         Located in a residential area overlooking the River                                   80 percent stake. De Beers, a          duced by the informal sector. “We    $450m a year due to smuggling.
                         Congo, the Grand Hotel Kinshasa is for guests who                                     shareholder in Sibeka, markets                                                   To counteract the illegal trade,
                         demand the very best services, selected from the                                      around 30 percent of the coun-                                              all diamonds exported by the DRC
                         finest choice available from around the world. The only                               try’s diamonds.                                                             as of April 2002 have to be sub-
                                                                                                                   For years, MIBA only exploited                                          mitted to certification by the Cen-
                         five-star hotel in the country offering a wide range
                                                                                                               40km3 of its total 78,000km3 con-                                           tre for Evaluation, Expert Analysis
                         of first-class facilities plus culinary excellence, the                               cessions. Exploitation has recent-                                          and Certification of Precious Min-
                         Grand Hotel provides the ultimate hotel experience.                                   ly spread to 940km3 and the com-                                            erals (CEEC).
                                                                                                               pany has decided to release some                                                 The DRC is also a member of
                                                                                                               portion of its remaining concessions                                        the Kimberley Certification Process.
                                                                                                               to private financial and technical                                          “The Kimberley certificate is a sub-
                                                                                                               partners, including DeBeers, Al-                                            stantial contribution in securing
                                                                                                               rosa, DHP and DGI/Emaxon in or-                                             commercialization. These certifi-
                                                                                                               der to boost the economy.                                                   cates have brought around $700m
                                                                                                                   MIBA was at one time world’s                                            - $800m to the state. In addition,
                                                                                                               biggest diamond manufacturer,                                               the process contributes to our in-
                                                                                                               producing 18 million carats. By                                             ternal transparency,” says Mr. Lu-
             Av. Batetela, B.P. 9535, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo
                                                                                                               1995, output had dropped to            The restructured market              abeya. “If we are to obtain inter-
                           Tel:+243 818110003 or 8946660/1/2/3
                                                                                                               around 4.3 million carats. Pro-        opens up opportunities in            national credibility, a legally secure
  Fax:+243 8841500, 8801625, 812616009 or 812616011,
                                                                                                               duction is picking up once again,      large-scale production.              framework is a necessity.”
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                                 WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006                                                                   SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                           Democratic Republic of

                                                                                               Congo                                                                                                                                     13

                                                                               Rebuilding the fabric connecting
                                                                               the economy with its future
                                                                               THE SHEER GEOGRAPHICAL EXPANSE OF THE DRC
                                                                               MEANS GOOD INFRASTRUCTURE AND TRANSPORT ARE
                                                                               VITAL FOR ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL RECOVERY
                                                                               ONE of the inevitable                        try’s railway company
                                                                               by-products of civil                         SNCC.
                                                                               strife is the disrepair                         Among other deals
                                                                               and destruction of lo-                       to date, the ministry
                                                                               cal infrastructure, and                      has negotiated with
                                                                               the DRC is no excep-                         foreign investor com-
                                                                               tion to this rule. As                        panies for the resur-
Each industrial venture of George Forrest International S.A.                   they stand today,                            facing of runways at
has been accompanied by a social improvement project.                          Congo’s roads, rail-                         both N’djili and
                                                                               ways, and airport net-                       Lubumbashi airports.
project in Kamoto represents an additional investors coming to                 work are in need of ex- HEVA MWAKASA In April last year, Con-
investment of over $300 million, the DRC. “Big companies have                  tensive restoration in Minister of           go signed an agree-
which we are entering into with a correspondingly big role to play             order to meet devel- Transport and           ment with the Belgian
Canadian firm Kinross,” he con- in encouraging the country’s de-               opment requirements. Communications authorities for coop-
tinues. As well as reopening the velopment. OM Group, for in-                     The country is vast                       eration between the
existing underground mine the stance, is consolidating its po-                 and relies on six forms of trans- ports of Antwerp and Matadi,
project will start a surface mine sition here by creating added-val-           portation: air, rail, road, river, and also Brussels and Kinshasa.
and a refinery.                        ue produce and exporting direct         lake and sea. Funding restric- With one million euros being put
    “We are proud of all our pro- marketable products,” he says.               tions preclude dealing with up by the Belgian Development
jects, because each time has              More investors would create          everything at once, so five re- Corporation, the port facilities
been a challenge. Every project more jobs and lead to increased                habilitation projects have been can be restored. The ministry is
requires the latest technology and economic activity. This in turn             given priority by the Ministry of also considering opening SNCC
expertise. In addition, every in- would translate into increased               Transport and Communications: up to private partners as a
dustrial project has been ac- revenues for the state meaning                   N’djili and Lubumbashi Interna- means of reviving the company.
companied by a social project less corruption and misman-                      tional Airports, Matadi sea port,                                                    The DRC’s roads, railways and airport networks are in need of
such as schools, hospitals and agement. It would also result in                public transport, and the coun-             Continued on page 14                     extensive restoration.
community clinics. That is part of greater re-investment in the
the contract as far as we are con- economy. Infrastructure renewal
cerned, and it is a principle we is vital. Projects such as road
give a lot of importance to. Just reconstruction supported by
as we want our schools and hos- the World Bank are key to im-
                                                                                  Grand Hotel Kinshasa: a constant oasis
pitals to be open not                             proving the existing            SITUATED on the banks of the            of a railway and became the coun-         has two universities and is home         “The hotel plays an important
just to our workers but                           situation.                      Congo River, the DRC’s capital          try’s capital in 1920.                    to the country’s government. It is role in making people feel secure.
also to the rest of the                              “The country is              Kinshasa is one of Africa’s most            Like any major city, Kinshasa of-     also the DRC’s main industrial cen- We provide them with good ser-
population.                                       coming from years of            dynamic and culturally active cities.   fers a variety of aspects: upmar-         ter, processing many of the raw ma- vices and, when they go back,
    “Every new project                            political instability, and      It has a population of seven and a      ket residential areas contrast with       terials brought from the interior.   they have the feeling of being well
involves around 700                               although much has               half million, making it the same        more bustling central urban zones,            This confluence of energies looked after, of being safe,” says
people directly or in-                            been done to re-es-             size as Johannesburg. Originally        where thriving communities of mu-         means Kinshasa is, in the context Mundabi Fal Bob, the hotel’s Gen-
directly. The invest-                             tablish communica-              founded as a trading post in 1881,      sicians and artists make for a world-     of the country’s peace process, eral Director. Starting out as a wait-
ments are complicat-                              tions and infrastruc-           it flourished with the construction     famous nightlife. In addition, the city   leaps ahead of the more remote er in 1971, he has worked at the
ed; our strength lies GEORGE A.                   ture, there is still a lot                                                                                        parts of the country. Infrastructure hotel for 34 years and is commit-
in the fact that we FORREST                       to do. Most of the                                                                                                is being repaired on a                            ted to the hotel and
have been working in President of                 world’s stockpile of                                                                                              major scale and the                               what it represents for
the country for a long George Forrest             raw materials is to be                                                                                            presence of resident                              the country.
time. We reinvest in International S.A. found in Africa: a great                                                                                                    foreigners is promot-                                 His experience as a
the DRC and have                                  quantity of oil, miner-                                                                                           ing a rapid economic                              manager and busi-
faith in its future. I see Congo as als and even agricultural pro-                                                                                                  recovery.                                         nessman makes him
my home, which motivates me to duce. I strongly believe that there                                                                                                      One institution                               fully aware of the coun-
continue. Today the context is are great economic perspec-                                                                                                          which has maintained                              try’s weaknesses when
very difficult and working becomes tives in Africa, particularly here                                                                                               its status through good                           it comes to attracting
more of a challenge. But it is ex- in Congo.                                                                                                                        times and bad is the MUDABI FAL                   investment. “The worst
citing, especially when you suc-          “The fact that investors are                                                                                              Grand Hotel Kinshasa BOB                          is red tape. If we can
ceed. The risks are high, it is true, here is positive, but it does de-                                                                                             (GHK). Jointly owned General Director put an end to it and al-
but they are balanced by good pend very much on the type of                                                                                                         by the state and the In- Grand Hotel              low people to run their
achievements – the fact that we investor. We need people and                                                                                                        terContinental Hotel Kinshasa                     companies to make a
are creating jobs, that I can see companies who are here to do                                                                                                      chain, it used to be the                          profit, and at the same
smiles on the faces of the em- their job properly and earn the re-                                                                                                  InterContinental Kinshasa. With its time help to develop the country,
ployees.”                              spect of the population, not peo-                                                                                            422 rooms, conference and ban- things will work,” he says.
    As well as mining, Forrest ple who are looking to hit the                                                                                                       queting facilities, leisure complex-     In particular, he recalls the pos-
Group has interests in agricul- jackpot and disappear. I want in-                                                                                                   es and shopping center, the hotel itive input of U.S. firms in the 70s.
ture. “The country has great po- vestors to keep coming, but I                                                                                                      is the obvious choice for national “American businessmen con-
tential for agriculture, thanks to the want them to be fully committed                                                                                              and foreign businessmen. It also tributed a lot to the development
extensive river network and the to the people and the country, as                                                                                                   features a master automatic gen- of our country, setting up compa-
fertile soil. Agriculture needs to be this is the only way to develop             The Grand Hotel Kinshasa has earned itself a reputation of                        erator that protects against un- nies and creating jobs, and we
encouraged,” states the president. proper projects here,” states the              providing unfaltering quality service and accommodation.                          controlled power-cuts.               think they could do so once again.”
    George Forrest is banking on firm’s chief executive.
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT                                                                       WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 2006                                                               SPECIAL ADVERTISING SUPPLEMENT

                                                                                                                 Democratic Republic of

14                                                                                                   Congo
Continued from page 13                 lished. Also pressing is the need
                                       to reduce the country’s present
    External financial help is al- transport costs, the highest in
so being made available. In De- Africa. The MTP will be the first
cember 2003 a group of donor transport project in DRC since
countries and organizations, in- the end of the civil war, at an ex-
cluding the African Develop- pected cost of $200m spread
ment Bank and the Bretton across all transportation sub-
Woods agencies, agreed to pro- sectors.
vide $4 billion to be used in re-         U.N. body MONUC Aviation
covery projects between 2004 is providing Congolese air-traf-
and 2006. The World Bank (WB) fic control officers with special-
together with the EU instigated ized training to bring their skills
a project to repair the road from up to international standards.
Kinshasa to the port of Matadi There is also a domestic plan to
(about 350km), as well as the modernize the DRC’s infra-
current rehabilitation program structure by equipping the main
that has started on the Kolwezi airports with the ‘very small
- Lubumbashi portion in the min- aperture terminal’ (VSAT) net-
ing region. An obvious winner work, which will be connected                                                                                                                                                 The DRC’s rainforests are home to

in terms of economic im-                      to the Southern African                                                                                                                                            around 35 million people and
pact. Other projects             Link-           Development Commu-                                                                                                                                        suppport some of the rarest wildlife
are contained with-         ing the coun-           nity (SADC) system,                                                                                                                                                  species in the world.
in the WB’s emer- try’s key trade and helping to enhance
gency multi-sector transport corridors regional coopera-
rehabilitation and        is vital for stable        tion.
reconstruction pro-
gram (PMUR).
    In November 2005,
with the aid of the WB, the
                                                        The DRC does
                                                  not have a national
                                               airline, but other com-
                                          panies link the country to Eu-
                                                                                        Respecting the hand that feeds
DRC government launched a rope and other African nations.                               COVERING an area of around              at forest conservation should be        fine areas for logging, conserva-        protection of the forest environ-
comprehensive program for The main international airport                                500,000 square miles, the rain-         focused. UNEP is also behind the        tion and community use, putting          ment,” says Joseph Kabila, the
economic and social revival. A is located in Kinshasa with oth-                         forests of the DRC’s Congo Basin        great apes survival project             an end to illegal timber extraction.     country’s president.
multimodal transport project ers in Lubumbashi, Kisangani,                              are the second largest in the world,    (GRASP), which held its first coun-     Other measures to be taken in-              Coupled with increased politi-
(MTP) has been created for the Goma and Gbado-lite. These                               and some of the globe’s last re-        cil meeting in Kinshasa in Sep-         clude a moratorium on the con-           cal stability, the existence of these
transportation sector to extend centers are serviced by West                            maining areas of primeval forest-       tember 2005. GRASP aims to raise        cessions of land and the recovery        forests and the rare wildlife provides
over five years from 2007 and East African carriers, as                                 ed lands. These tropical forests        the global profile of the plight fac-   of around 25 million hectares of un-     the opportunity to develop a strong
through 2011. The gover n- well as Air France. Kenya Air-                               support rare and endangered             ing the great apes and their habi-      lawful concessions.                      eco-tourism sector in the future.
ment’s main objective is to con- ways is the latest airline to fly                      species such as gorillas, chim-         tat, as well as taking steps to pro-        The bank and the FAO are al-
solidate the reunification direct to the DRC. Its Nairobi-                              panzees, bonobos, white rhinos,         tect them.                              so supporting the development of
process by rebuilding three of Lubumbashi route, opened in                              okapi, and the Congo peacock. An            A comprehensive new forestry        a series of new laws that will help           COUNTRY STAFF
the country’s key trade and February 2005, has proved                                   estimated 35 million people live in     code was adopted in August 2002,        to implement the code, including               Editorial Director:
transport corridors. Existing highly popular. “The mining                               and around them.                        supported by the World Bank and         a law on nature conservation, a vi-            Christelle Thomas
state-owned companies will un- zone of Lubumbashi and the                                  In 2001, the DRC was singled         the U.N. Food and Agriculture Or-       tal tool for the sustainable devel-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Research Director:
dergo restructuring and, where surrounding provinces consti-                            out by the U.N. Environment Pro-        ganization (FAO). Both agencies         opment of the country’s forest re-
possible, partnerships with pri- tute an economic center,” says                         gramme (UNEP) as one of 15              are involved in preparing a national    serves. “The exploitation of forests        Philippe van Maldeghem
vate companies will be estab- Country Manager Jean Uku.                                 countries where international efforts   forest zoning plan, which will de-      must go hand-in-hand with the

   Connecting people across vast areas                                                                                          Bonobos: protecting our closest
   without fixed lines or electricity in place                                                                                  relatives on the brink of extinction
   SINCE the DRC’s telecommuni-                                                                                                  ONLY to be found in the DRC,           Environment, to which she is           ban, is providing her with land,
   cations sector was liberalized,                                                                                               the bonobos, or pygmy chim-            grateful for support in imple-         but she must rely on donors
   growth has been phenomenal,                                                                                                   panzees, are one of hu-                menting the bonobo trade               for finance.
   going from fewer than 200,000                                                                                                 mankind’s closest relatives and
   subscribers in 2001 to around                                                                                                 are facing extinction because
   2.5 million today. Cellphone com-                                                                                             of habitat encroachment and
   panies have created two networks                                                                                              the bush-meat trade.
   that cover the whole country, even                                                                                                Daughter of a veterinary
   where there is no electricity.                                                                                                doctor and avid conservation-
        In 2003 the government set up                                                                                            ist, Claudine Andre is the head
   a regulatory body, ARPTC, to im-                                                                                              – and heart – behind the Lola
   plement the new statutory and                                                                                                 Ya Bonobo sanctuary. When
   regulatory laws. “We aim to en-        The two main cellphone operators have made telephone                                   conflict broke out in the early
   sure the effectiveness of compe-       communication possible throughout the whole country.                                   90s, she took on the care of
   tition, provide guarantees for in-                                                                                            Kinshasa Zoo animals, enlist-
   vestors and ensure universal ac-       brought telephone communica-            endeavors.                                     ing help from local firms to pro-
   cess,” says Louis Kaziba Muloko,       tion to the Congolese for the first        With high levels of poverty, they           vide food and shelter. Her first
   President of ARPTC.                    time, helping to improve stan-          have made telephone services                   bonobo orphan was brought in
        The two main private opera-       dards of living and increasing sta-     accessible by setting up low-rate              with little hope for its survival,
   tors are Celtel and Vodacom. A         bility. They provide employment,        prepaid services – at present                  but Ms. Andre discovered that
   third company, SAIT, operates on       both directly and indirectly, and are   around 98% of customers are                    the key ingredient needed was
   a smaller scale and there are al-      involved in training people to be-      prepaid. Prospects for growth are              affection. Since then, she and
   so a few companies working in          come the next generation of em-         high, given the country’s increased            her team of trained workers
   specific areas.                        ployees. Furthermore, their tax         stability and continued econom-                have rescued many more or-
        Both Celtel and Vodacom have      contributions are a significant         ic development.                                phaned apes, and her shelter
   committed to investing in the          source of income for the gov-              One of ARPTC’s priorities is to             currently houses 38.
   country in infrastructure, equip-      ernment. In addition, the firms         provide up-to-date statistics. “We                 In the future, she hopes to
   ment and human resources.              juxtapose their business objectives     are working with the Central Bank              open a reserve which will al-
   Working in a vast area with no fixed   with a sense of social responsi-        to set up a modern information                 so function as an eco-tourism          Conservation programs are cost effective, accomplishing a
   lines in place, the companies have     bility, helping to fund charitable      system,” says Mr. Muloko.                      project. The Ministry of the           great deal with very little, but more contributions are needed.
    The Democratic Republic of Congo is calling time on conflict as it prepares
for its first general elections in over forty years. Resolute on bringing a peaceful
conclusion to past confrontations, it is making steady progress in its transition to
     democracy and stability. Backed by the United Nations, European Union,
 NGOs and other African Nations, the Congolese people are committed to driving
           DRC to the peaceful organization of the elections in 2006 and
                       a future of continuity and progression.

                                                The Democratic Republic of Congo

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