ISLAMABAD: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government of Pakistan on Wednesday signed an agreement to invest $99.1 million for improving water supply, sanitation, and solid waste management facilitates of eight smaller cities in Sindh province.
ADB Country Director for Pakistan Werner E Liepach and Economic Affairs Division (EAD) Secretary Muhammad Shahzad Arbab signed the loan agreement, while Additional Chief Secretary Development Arif Ahmed Khan and North Sindh Urban Services Corporation Limited (NSUSC) Managing Director Niaz Ali Shar signed the project agreement on behalf of the government of Sindh.
“The ‘Sindh Cities Improvement Investment Programme (SCIIP) tranche 2, approved by ADB’s board of directors on December 18, 2012, aims to provide urban utility services to over 6.0 million residents of eight major towns in northern Sindh including Jacobabad and Gothki in addition to Khairpur, Larkana, New Sukkur, Rohri, Shikarpur, and Sukkur. Improvements in urban services for better quality of life in these six fast growing cities were already initiated under the tranche 1 of the programme,” says Liepach.
Sindh’s smaller cities are experiencing rapid population growth and a severe deficit of reliable urban infrastructure that has created major health and hygiene problems stinting economic growth and livelihood opportunities of the people. The NSUSC will implement the project over the next four years (2013-2017) in coordination with the Planning and Development Department – the executing agency. The total funding volume of SCIIP 2 is $139.8 million of which ADB will finance a total of $99.1 million through two loans: $74 million from ADB’s special funds resources, and $25.1 million from ADB’s ordinary capital resources; and government providing counterpart funds of $40.7 million.
“The project will build on the gains made under tranche 1 that has successfully introduced local government owned and professionally managed independent urban utility company to address the mounting water supply and sanitation challenges. The project will promote increased citizen participation and support for sustainability and efficiency of the urban services,” Liepach added.The SCIIP 2 also supports institutional reforms to provide investments into urban services and infrastructure, and develop capacities of the new institutions. – DailyTimes