BISHKEK (TCA) — Under its framework to support water and wastewater modernization in Kyrgyzstan, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is providing financing for projects in four more Kyrgyz cities, with a total population of over 141,000 people. The European Union (EU) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) will jointly co-finance these projects, building on existing successful cooperation on EBRD-led projects, the EBRD said.
The financing agreements were signed on May 11 at the EBRD’s Annual Meeting in Nicosia, Cyprus, by the Minister of Economy of the Kyrgyz Republic, Arzybek Kozhoshev, and EBRD First Vice President, Phil Bennett.
The city of Balykchy will receive a loan of up to US$ 1.21 million from the EBRD, an equal amount from the EIB and an investment grant of US$ 3.5 million from the EU’s Investment Facility for Central Asia (IFCA).
The city of Maili-Suu will receive loans of up to US$ 1.6 million each from the EBRD and the EIB, and an investment grant of US$ 4.6 million from the EU’s IFCA.
The city of Toktogul will receive loans of up to US$ 1.21 million each from the EBRD and the EIB, and an investment grant for US$ 3.5 million from the EU’s IFCA.
Lastly, the city of Uzgen will receive loans of up to US$ 2.75 million each from the EBRD and EIB, and an investment grant from the EU’s IFCA of US$ 5.5 million.
All the loans will be provided to the Kyrgyz Republic for on-lending to municipal water companies in these cities. The funding will allow the cities to undertake critical water supply improvements, introduce modern metering systems and upgrade operations and maintenance equipment.
The municipal water companies will also undergo internal restructuring to strengthen their accounting, environmental and social practices. The investment will prepare the cities for future large-scale extension of services, including wastewater services which are currently available to only one-third of their populations.
The financing will be accompanied by technical cooperation programs of up to US$ 1.1 million for each water company financed by the government of Japan and the EU’s IFCA program.
Including these four projects, the EBRD together with the EIB has invested over US$ 59 million (€54 million equivalent) into water and wastewater modernization in 18 cities in Kyrgyzstan.