Hluttaw approves Dutch aid for Mandalay water plan

Photo Children collect water for daily use at a village on the outskirts of Mandalay. Photo - EPA

11 June 19 - Source: Myanmar Times - The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (Assembly of the Union) has approved an offer of assistance from the Netherlands government and loans from two Netherlands banks for a water supply project in Pyigyitagun township, Mandalay Region.

The assembly voted last Friday on the project, which is projected to be completed by 2021, U Tun Tun Oo, MP for Pyigyitagun, said.

"We will install 20,000 water meters in Pyigyitagun at a cost of €59.92 million (K103.4 billion), of which the Netherlands government will provide half as a grant and we will have to take loans for the rest," he said.

The project will purify water from the Dutthawadi River and supply 70 percent of the township's needs. Currently, a project of the Japan International Cooperation Agency provides 30pc of the township's water, he said.

"The grace period for the loan is three years, while the repayment period is 10 years. The interest rate is 2.3pc, so about K5 million will have to be invested in water meters. I pointed out in the hluttaw that the loans will have to be repaid by the state, so it's very important that the work be done within two years," said U Tun Tun Oo.

The management of waste water to ensure it does not flow back into the river will be undertaken by the Mandalay Region Development Board in cooperation with Mandalay City Development Committee.

Willages in Patheingyi township located near Pyigyitagon township will also benefit from the project, said U Khin Maung Win, deputy minister for the Ministry of Planning and Finace.

Since 1995, almost every home in the township has had hand pumps and tube wells, so they had no need for water meters. It was suggested to draw up designs to install water meters in other parts of Mandalay city, and to expand the distribution system to the downtown area. Water is now supplied to only 70 pc of the city through an underground system, he said. – Translated

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