Experts endorse smart transport technology across Africa

As Covid-19 persists, African countries are working to provide certainty in the transport sector and avoid market disruption.

The approved smart Technology application comes in a timely manner to facilitate intelligent transport systems (ITS). This innovation will go a long way to curb human interaction in ports operations, increase safety cross-borders transport and build help resilience to future disruptions.

Attending this webinar, eminent panelists highlighted transports operational challenges linked to COVID-19 insurgence and endorsed a knowledge product on smart and seamless connectivity along trans-African trade and transport corridors. These adopted resolutions will serve as resource materials for capacity building and training on the application of technology for smart and seamless cross-borders in Africa.

For the short term, the proposed systems will assist efforts towards the eradication of the Covid-19 pandemic by reducing physical contact between human operators. On the long run the proposed systems will enable more effective coordination between trading partners, increase asset utilization levels, improve the management and protection of infrastructure.

Speaking at the webinar, William Lugemwa, Director of Private Sector Development and Finance Division at ECA encouraged African countries to begin to accept electronic documents during the pandemic and beyond and to pilot new automated and digital technologies to promote contactless processing and delivery measures.

Emphasizing on African Union Commission engagement Mr. Marzouk Atef Acting Director, Department of Infrastructure and Energy at the African Union Commission indicated that “By 2040 we aims to build 12000 km of new railway lines at USD 36 billion and modernize 17000 km existing railways lines at the cost of USD 07 Billion to reduce Carbon footprint while promoting trade and regional connectivity” .

Highlighting the importance of adequate Energy resources, Dr. Towela Nyirenda Jere AUDA-NEPAD Representative indicated AUDA is working with partners on the continental energy transmission master plan to meet energy requirements for industrialization and achieving continental digitalization aspirations” therefore through an effective network of Africa corridors Africa will be able to ensure greater African integration, promote trade, mobilize resources and create jobs, she concluded.

This high level session held under theme “smart and seamless transport and trade connectivity along trans-African corridors” and was attended by representatives of member States, African Union Commission, Regional Economic Communities (RECs), United Nations organizations, the private sector, civil society, academia and sectorial organizations.