Facilitating subnational land-use planning in the Republic of the Congo

  • Year

    2021 – 2023

  • Location

    Republic of the Congo

  • Partners

    Ministry of Land-use Planning, Infrastructures and Road Maintenance (MATIER), Initiative Développement

  • Budget

    EUR 150 000

  • Funded by

    EU REDD Facility


The Congolese state’s spatial planning strategy is still very centralised and is organised around ministries which have some difficulty in coordinating their reciprocal interventions.

In addition, there is a certain disparity in planning tools, the scope of application and linkages of which have not yet been clarified. There is therefore a need to bring together and decompartmentalise approaches to promote coordinated regional planning.

The objective

The objective of the EU REDD Facility is to make available to the Ministry of Land-use Planning, Infrastructures and Road Maintenance (MATIER) a methodology for departmental land-use planning scheme, tested and validated at departmental level, with the involvement of all relevant stakeholders (line ministries, technical and financial partners, research institutes, private sector, civil society, etc.) and with support of the Land-Use Planner tool.

The challenge

Several regulatory texts have been adopted to move towards a better planning, starting with the 2003 Law on the Organisation and Functioning of Local Authorities and the Orientation Law for the Development and Planning of the Territory adopted in 2014, but their application is still only very partial. The Pool is thus the only department in Congo to benefit from a Departmental Development Plan, developed by Initiative Développement in line with the 2003 Law, while the first departmental land-use planning scheme already drawn up on a pilot basis is considered to be very perfectible by the General Directorate of Land-use Planning.

Therefore, the challenge is to support the MATIER involved in the co-design of the upcoming Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI) programme on land-use planning through the inclusive development of a local land-use planning methodology, tested and validated at departmental level.

Local consultations in the Republic of the Congo

The approach

Implemented by Initiative Développement, the approach involves the following steps:

  • Engage in one department with local stakeholders (local government, civil society and to co-develop and test the departmental land-use planning scheme methodology.
  • Propose to MATIER a departmental land-use planning scheme methodology for which principles were previously agreed/validated at the departmental level.
  • Document and illustrate the development of the methodology through the elaboration of a briefing.
  • Support the MATIER on the organisation and facilitation of coordination meetings with its partners, in particular with AFD and partners regarding the articulation between the departmental land-use planning scheme and the overall land-use planning strategy supported by CAFI.

Results and impact

  • The Pool Department was chosen as the pilot department, in close consultation with the MATIER and the Pool Departmental Council.
  • A review of previous departmental experiences in terms of spatial planning was carried out.
  • A draft departmental land-use planning scheme methodological guide was co-developed and some of its steps were tested at the district level of Mindouli.
  • A departmental land-use planning scheme methodology was consolidated, building on the lessons learnt from the experimental tests carried out in the Mindouli District of the Pool Department.
  • The land-use planning scheme of the Mindouli District over a 20-year horizon was designed.
  • All stakeholders participated effectively in land-use planning and civil society organisations’ capacities in land-use planning were strengthened.