Wednesday, August 23, 2017

ADB gives $200m in loans for infrastructure, service delivery, governance

  • News Desk, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2017-08-09 14:14:17 BdST

bdnews24

The Asian Development Bank will give Bangladesh a $200 million loan package to ‘strengthen urban infrastructure, service delivery, and governance’.

Despite a ‘healthy’ growth rate, Bangladesh still faces challenges in developing ‘sustainable and inclusive growth in the face of rapid urbanisation’, according to an ADB press release.

“The country’s municipalities still need significant investment to not only improve service delivery and the urban environment but also strengthen resilience to climate change,” said ADB Urban Development Specialist Alexandra Vogl.

A 2015 study found that 32 percent of the country’s urban population had a piped water supply, while 58 percent had access to improved sanitation, the ADB said.

Bangladesh has also faced challenges in managing fecal sludge and drainage, which is exacerbated by poor governance, community participation and limited capacity, it added.

The new financing will contribute to building and improving 600km of roads, 300km of drains, 180km of water supply pipes and 60,000 metred household connections. It will also be used for slum improvement work, the construction of sludge management facilities in 14 towns and the development and improvement of solid waste sites in 20.

The funds will target projects that emphasise climate resilience and gender equity and will be used in 35 municipalities around the country, with a total population close to 3.1 million.

“This additional ADB financing for the well performing Third Urban Governance and Infrastructure (Sector) Project builds on the work of two previous ADB projects, expanding work in the pourashavas where we are already working and into five new ones,” said Vogl.

From 2003 to 2007 the ADB provided a $65 million loan to support governance reform and infrastructure development in 27 municipalities. A second loan provided $87 million to 51 municipalities from 2008-2016 and a third project of $125 million received approval in 2014.