Example Of Case Study On Democratic Republic Of Congo Electric Sector
Type of paper: Case Study
Topic: Supreme Court, Confidentiality, Law, Congo, Stock Market, Infrastructure, Politics, Investment
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s infrastructure has been slowing deteriorating over the years due to lack of repairs and maintenance. The condition is blamed on the strife and political instability that the country has been facing for decades . However, before the conflicts arose in Congo though, its geographical state was a hindrance to infrastructural development especially roads, this is because of the vast forest lands and several rivers that crisscrossed the land. Despite this, a private global system of mobile communications has been established within the country and provides a platform for mobile communication for most of the country. There was also the discovery of hydro power in the country. The discovery has led to Congo being the largest producer of hydro power in Africa. In this light, the country is able to produce hydropower to support its citizens comfortably (African development bank group 2011).
The political framework of DRC is still in a state of transition. Based on colonial past with Belgium, DRC gained independence in a dilapidated state after it had been pillaged by the Belgium monarchy. The Republic having undergone several years of civil war and instability is trying to adopt a presidential system. The current government however has shown great interest in changing the state of affairs and attracting private sectors. Until 2013, the energy especially electricity sector was controlled by acts dating to the colonial era. However, in 2013, a bill that is aimed at opening the electricity sector to public and private investors alike was passed. The adoption of this bill shows the government’s resolve to open up the energy market from state to public. The act provides for mechanisms that regulate the competition that may arise as a result of opening up of the electricity sector (Emwa 2013). By doing this, the act attracts both private and public investors. The move by Congo parliament is a guarantee of sustainability as it strikes a balance between every individual’s needs, from the state to private sector and producers to consumers. It ensures that is fairness and equality in the conduction of activities.
The bill that was passed in March 2013 altered the then existing framework providing for the ministry that remits electricity, a regulatory body and a state owned body that is meant to regulate electricity in the urban and rural areas. The institutional framework is weak as far as the relationship between two different sectors is concerned. For example, the generation of hydro electric power may lead to conflict with the agricultural sector which also depends on water for its success (African development bank group 2011). However the regulatory body, though with no clear set rules for solving disputes has been given the mandate to solve any conflict that may arise in the energy sector. The framework set encourages public participation by opening up opportunities for bidding and provision of services by contract.
The judicial system in DRC was marred with injustice and corruption. The citizens could not trust the courts as they believed that justice could be bought or sold depending on how rich one is. In addition, few people access the judicial system to solve their personal and interpersonal disputes. It is believed that the state of justice was wanting due to the limited access the courts had to the citizens. The restriction had been as result of few court systems which placed a heavy burden on the implementers of justice. However the Constitution passed in 2006 increased the number of courts from 10 to 26 and also provided for juvenile court. The move was aimed at bringing justice to the grass root communities (International Legal Assistant Consortium 2010).
The framework in Congo has been made transparent as there are government agencies established to act as a watchdog over the energy sector. In the case of involvement of private sectors, the energy Bill passed in 2013 provides that bids shall only be granted if the process is carried out transparently.
For private investors, there is always the risk of corruption which may see an investor lose an opportunity they had qualified for. Poor project management which leads to mismanagement may be a risk an investor may face. Mismanagement leads to losses. The risks are mitigated by the investors creating off shore accounts or acquiring insurance from the World Bank.
In order to encourage private investors within the democratic republic of Congo, the government should set a conducive environment by reducing level of taxes and providing legal security (Emwa 2013). The infrastructure of the country should also be improved in order to facilitate transportation and communication. Small and medium enterprises should be able to receive funds from the government to encourage investments in the energy sector. In the process of encouraging and enticing private investors, the government should encourage public, private sector dialogue to ensure that both sides’ interests are met. A clear guideline should be constituted for the Public Procurement code to ensure transparency.
African development bank group. Democratic Republic of Congo report. Full country report, Africa Infrastructure Knowledge Program, 2011.
Emwa. "Significant changes currently taking place in electrical power law in the Democratic Republic of Congo." Legal, Chicago, 2013.
International Legal Assistant Consortium. "Rebuilding courts and trust:." International Bar Association. 2010. http://www.afrimap.org/english/images/documents/DRC-IBA-ILAC-Justice-Aug09.pdf (accessed March 3, 2015).