The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has announced that it will provide two loans totalling $12m to upgrade water supply systems in six cities in Tajikistan.
The loans will be used to improve water infrastructures in four northern cities of Istravshan, Panzhakent, Shakhriston and Zafarobod, and two southern cities of Isaev and Yovon.
The EBRD will provide the loan to Khojagii Manziliyu-Kommunali (KMK), a government agency responsible for water supply and wastewater treatment services in the country.
Once completed, the projects are expected to improve water infrastructure and provide better access to safe drinking water in the cities.
EBRD Dushanbe resident office head Ulf Hindstrom said, "The EBRD financing will enable the water companies in the six cities to upgrade their infrastructure, expand access to safe water to families that currently collect it from taps in the yards, and make sure households connected to the water supply system do actually receive water and are billed accordingly. This will help utilities become self-reliant."
Khojagii Manziliyu Kommunali general director Alimurod Tagoimurodov said the EBRD is helping the country to implement water supply improvement projects.
"We also hope that the EBRD will continue its close cooperation with Khojagii Manziliyu Kommunali in similar projects in order to improve water supply and wastewater systems in other cities and rayons of the Republic of Tajikistan," Tagoimurodov added.
The Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is planning to co-fund the projects in the four northern cities and provide a grant of $8.5m, while European Union's Investment Fund for Central Asia (IFCA) is also considering providing a grant of $7m in Isaev and Yovon.
EBRD has assisted 21 cities across the nation to provide potable water to about 960,000 people.
Image: An EBRD approved loan will help six cities in Tajikistan to improve access to potable water. Photo: Juhanson.