Sri Lanka receives US$ 40 million additional financing for water and sanitation prorgrammes
Sri Lanka has reportedly been allocated US$ 40 million in additional financing for the country to expand water supply, sanitation, and hygiene services in seven districts through the Water Supply and Sanitation Improvement Project (WASSIP) by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors.
The project is to also increase septage facilities in the more populated part of the country in Western, Southern and North Western Provinces.
WASSIP is the third water sector project financed by the World Bank since 1998 to provide safe drinking water and sanitation in rural, estate and urban areas of Sri Lanka. With the additional financing, the project will support the government of Sri Lanka’s ‘Water for All’ pledge to cover 4.7 million people in the next four years, local media reports stated.
The project finances new water supply systems, rehabilitation of existing water supply systems, toilets for households and schools, and septage treatment plants, local media reports have highlighted.
“Building safe water supply and sanitation systems to ensure a healthy nation is crucial as Sri Lanka battles the COVID-19 pandemic,” World Bank Country Director for Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka Faris Hadad-Zervos has been quoted as saying.
“Building on the good results of the parent project, the additional finance will extend coverage to areas of the country that are most vulnerable to climate related risks and have the highest level of poverty.”
According to reports, the project has already reached about 310,000 people in Badulla, Nuwara Eliya, Kegalle, Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi, Ratnapura and Moneragala.
The project is being implemented by Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Water Supply and the project management unit includes staff from the National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB). “This is the only project that provides treated piped water to rural and estate sectors of Sri Lanka,” said World Bank Task Team Leader Pratibha Mistry of the project has been quoted as saying. “The project has demonstrated that communities can manage and operate their own systems. With this experience this additional financing intends to expand this model of service delivery in urban areas for improved sanitation.”
Sri Lanka’s ongoing development programme covering all key economic sectors has received much support from foreign bilateral and multilateral financial institutions. The country is upgrading and developing all utilities and infrastructure sectors creating many business/investment opportunities. Sri Lanka is fast becoming a business hub in the South Asian region given it’s geographical positioning in the Indian ocean and the many trade agreements as well as trade concessions enjoyed by the country. Therefore much prominence has been given to Sri Lanka’s development programme. Foreign businesses/investors could explore business/investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’s development programme.
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