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Nepal - Country Assistance Program Evaluation (2004)

Nepal - Country Assistance Program Evaluation (2004)

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125. One of the key program weaknesses was almost the mirror image of its major strength.
While in some sectors and subsectors successful models were developed and further evolved,
in others, past experience was either not adequately taken into account (e.g., rural credit


projects and the institutional problems of ADBN) or promising models and experiences were not
followed up (e.g., the lack of follow-up of successful projects in the education sector).

126. Related to this was the frequent absence (especially in the earlier years) of clear and
shared visions (shared by the Government, ADB, and other key stakeholders) on ultimate sector
development objectives. This, and the very short-term nature of ADB’s ADTA, hampered the
effective delivery of assistance to strengthen key development and market institutions. More
recently, examples exist of much more effective efforts in longer term institution building
(notably the policy and institutional support provided to the agriculture sector).

127. A further weakness, as brought out during stakeholder consultation, was an
overestimation on the part of ADB staff members of the ability of government staff members and
agencies to understand institutional, crosscutting, and policy concerns and be able to do
something about them. This resulted in loans containing conditions that could not be met,
thereby holding up implementation and disbursement. Moreover, inadequate attention was
given to building broad-based support for policy reforms that adversely affected some interest

128. A third weakness was the propensity to spread investment too thinly over too many
sectors. By the mid-1990s, successful investment models existed for projects in agriculture;
water supply and sanitation; roads (and later rural roads); education; and, to some extent,
power, all sectors that were a high priority in all three COSs. Little need existed to spread out to
sectors such as tourism and urban development or corporate governance and finance when
ample investment potential existed in established sectors for the rather limited IPF available to
the country. Most projects in these latter sectors proved less successful than in more
established sectors. This is, perhaps, not surprising, since they involved new implementing
agencies and institutions, and working development models as a basis for project formulation
had not yet been developed.

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