Uganda

 

 

2002-2004

 

Resident Utility Reform Adviser and Team Leader to the Utility Reform Unit (URU) of the World Bank-funded Privatization & Utility Sector Reform Program of the Government of the Republic of Uganda (GoU). The URU, organizationally attached to the Ministry of Finance, is the lead agency for implementing utility reform, privatization and regulatory capacity building in Uganda. After the successful completion of the telecommunications reform and privatization program, major activities revolved around the implementation of reforms in the electricity, railways and water sectors.

Stefan’s role across all infrastructure sectors, i.e. electricity, water and waste water, telecommunications and transport, was to manage and direct transaction advisors for each of the various long-term concessions, advise the GoU (the Minister of Finance, the relevant Line Ministers, and the Privatization Program’s Steering Committee, the Divestiture Reform Implementation Committee) on all policy and commercial aspects of the transactions and the wider sector reform issues, such as the regulatory framework, licensing regime and tariff structures, to encourage professionalism, transparency and international best practice in utility reform and to facilitate stakeholder participation in the process. For its achievements in utility reforms, during Stefan's involvement as lead government advisor, Uganda was awarded Best Utility Reform Program in Africa by the World Bank.

Stefan contributed substantially to the negotiations and successful closure of the 20-year Uganda Electricity Generation Concession signed in November 2002. Stefan particularly succeeded in structuring the 20-year Uganda Electricity Distribution Concession in rather difficult negotiations (stretching over a period of 18 months) between Government and a single qualified bidder to a win-win situation for both parties. The distribution concession was signed in early 2004, with an estimated investment volume of USD 400 million.

Water sector reforms followed a multi-faceted approach, implemented in cooperation with the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC). A performance-based management contract for the Kampala service area (with ONDEO) helped improving technical and commercial water losses, as well as building up technical capacity within NWSC. A parallel, comprehensive financial and operational restructuring and capacity building program aimed at positioning NWSC for taking the lead in a nation-wide program for introducing private sector participation in rural areas, predominantly by entering into small-scale concessions and providing revolving funds to local operators. The balanced and multi-modular approach to water sector reforms in Uganda is widely regarded as outstanding success.

As Lead Advisor to Government, Stefan successfully advocated early on a cross-border Joint Railway Concession for Uganda Railways Corporation (URC) and Kenya Railways Corporation (KRC).  He prepared the first President’s Summit between Uganda and Kenya on the issue of a cross-border railway concession and subsequently led all activities on the Ugandan side towards harmonizing the transaction structures into one consistent, commercially viable approach in line with the policy objectives of both Governments. Though Stefan left Uganda prior to the actual bidding phase for the concession, his role was key in securing political support and in structuring a viable approach for Africa’s first trans-border railway concession, Euromoney Project Finance Magazine’s “African Transport Deal of the Year 2006”.