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World Bank loan for Paraguay to improve water and sanitation

Thursday, April 16th 2009 - 06:50 UTC
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The World Bank approved a 64 million US dollars loan to increase the efficiency, coverage and sustainability of water and sanitation services in Paraguay. The project is expected to benefit almost 17% of Paraguayans, especially the most vulnerable groups.

“The World Bank has supported Paraguay in improving water and sanitation services since the 1970s, and today we continue to support its efforts to expand services to the entire population,” said Pedro Alba, World Bank Director for Paraguay, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay.

“As seldom in the past years in Paraguay, this modernization program will significantly help to increase water and sanitation coverage and enhance supply efficiency,” said Minister of Public Works and Communications Efraim Alegre, adding that this investment “will benefit a major sector of our population, especially the most vulnerable groups”.

The project is estimated to benefit about one million people who live in the Metropolitan area of Asunción by increasing sewage coverage, treating water effluents, and improving the quality of the supplied drinking water.

In rural areas, the project will benefit nearly 24.500 people with the construction of about 70 water supply systems, to provide the infrastructure to process and obtain drinking water. Additionally, the project seeks to build and/or expand approximately 30 water systems to support more than 6.000 indigenous peoples in rural areas.

Paraguay has limited access to water networks. In rural areas, only 49% of the population has access. While nearly 80% of Paraguay’s urban residents have access to water, only 15% have access to sanitation networks, an issue that has turned critical in Asunción and its Metropolitan Area, where only 33% of the population is connected to the sanitation network.

“It is very important for us to be part of the Government of Paraguay’s efforts to strengthen sector institutions and thereby provide sustainable water and sanitation services for the population” said María Angélica Sotomayor, World Bank Project Manager.

The project also will increase coverage for indigenous populations and implement health education campaigns in rural communities.

The fixed-rate 64 million loan has a 27-year maturity and an eight-year grace period.

Categories: Investments, Paraguay.

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