World Bank to fund water security project in Mekong Delta

Update: March, 04/2020 - 07:55
Construction of the Kênh Nhánh Sluice to prevent saltwater intrusion in Kiên Giang Province’s Rạch Giá City. VNA/VNS Photo Hồng Đạt

HCM CITY — The Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta city of Cần Thơ seeks to borrow US$25 million from the World Bank to expand its local water supply network in the 2025-30 period under a proposed water project to be funded by the bank.

According to a report from the Cần Thơ Department of Construction, of the figure, the Cần Thơ Water Supply and Sewerage Joint-Stock Company needs $10 million; the Cần Thơ Water Supply and Sewerage Joint Stock Company 2, $10 million; and the Centre for Clean Water and Rural Environmental Sanitation, $5 million.

The city also needs to borrow additional $25 million after 2030, according to the report.

Đào Anh Dũng, vice chairman of Cần Thơ City People’s Committee, said Cần Thơ had organised many meetings to discuss the implementation of the project, which had been debated for years.

Dũng, who spoke at a meeting with the World Bank on the proposed Mekong Integrated Water Security project on Monday, urged agencies to work with the bank to speed up implementation.

David Lord, specialist in charge of the project at the World Bank, said the project was still under discussion between the Ministry of Construction and other agencies.

“We will continue to discuss directly with not only Cần Thơ but all other localities on the issue as it relates to local water security of the entire region,” he added.

In addition, the World Bank would continue to offer technical support to the Ministry of Construction to help implement the project in the region.

According to Lord, the project will be implemented at both local and regional levels as this is a major water security programme for the Mekong Delta region.

The project, implemented by the Ministry of Construction with support from the World Bank, is expected to ensure supply of clean water for residents in the region. In addition, the project also deals with the collection and treatment of wastewater and drainage infrastructure.

“We want to enhance the water security for Cần Thơ as well as other Mekong Delta provinces,” he said.

According to a report from the Cần Thơ Department of Construction, from the 2025-30 period (phase 1), Cần Thơ would need 30,000 - 50,000cu.m of clean water per day from the project, and 70,000 - 100,000cu.m per day after 2030 (phase 2).

In 2017, the Ministry of Construction and the World Bank held a seminar on the first report of the project in Cần Thơ.

The project would cover an area of ​​more than with a population of 9.4 million (in 2016). The overall proposed project has an investment of about $1.7 billion.

The project aims to enhance the use of water resources in the city of Cần Thơ and the provinces of Sóc Trăng, Hậu Giang, An Giang, Kiên Giang, Cà Mau and Bạc Liêu.

It would help sustain agricultural productivity, provide access to water supply, and contribute to climate change adaptation through integrated approaches toward water resource management. — VNS