DUSHANBE (TCA) — Stepping up its effort to support the responsible use of water, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is to prepare a policy brief for the efficient and effective development of a climate-resilient water sector in Tajikistan, the Bank said on August 30.
Tajikistan – with rising temperatures, retreating glaciers and a decrepit infrastructure suffering from underinvestment – is among the countries in Central Asia that are most vulnerable to climate change.
In addition to building on the Bank’s experience in Tajikistan, the policy brief will also incorporate the findings of a recent seminar that gathered water industry specialists from Tajikistan and the Kyrgyz Republic to discuss issues aimed at improving water supply and wastewater treatment in the region.
The two-day seminar took place in Safed-Dara, at 2,100 metres above sea level on the Safedorak plateau in the Pamir Mountains of Tajikistan. It attracted over 50 professionals from neighbouring countries as well as representatives of the EU and UNICEF.
Funded by the Czech Republic and supported by the governments of Tajikistan and the Kyrgyz Republic, the seminar provided a knowledge-sharing and networking opportunity for specialists involved in water management.
EBRD representatives outlined the Bank’s project financing requirements, including eligibility criteria and procurement. Experts also discussed the scope of investment required to implement water and wastewater projects related to climate change.
In particular, special attention was paid to ways of improving the efficiency of the Tajik water sector. Sessions also explored priorities based on the experience of water associations in other countries such as the Czech Republic.
In addition, participants discussed ways of promoting water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) – a series of initiatives and programmes to raise awareness of the value of water supply and sanitation services and good practices in water management.
The EBRD has been working with the government of Tajikistan to finance major water projects since 2004. To date, the Bank has supported numerous investments of this kind, totalling more than US$ 100 million across the country and covering 22 cities.
In Tajikistan, the EBRD is active with individual investments as well as with the Climadapt framework, which is dedicated to investment in climate resilience technologies to help make the country’s private sector more resilient to climate change. The Bank offers loans to private sector firms, farmers and households through partner financial institutions.