Tunisia and the World Bank signed, on Friday afternoon in Tunis, a financing agreement worth pound 113.6 million to support a project to improve sanitation in Tunis-North (Tunis and Ariana) and Southern (Sfax, Gabès, Médenine and Tataouine) regions, said the Ministry of Economy and Planning.
The agreement was signed by Samir Saïed, Minister for the Economy and Planning, and Alexandre Arrobbio, World Bank Resident Representative for Tunisia, in the presence of Leila Chikhaoui, Minister for the Environment, and the CEO of the National Sanitation Utility (ONAS).
The total cost of the project is 1,746 million dinars and will be implemented over a period of 10 years.
The World Bank funds will be used to rehabilitate and renovate obsolete equipment at wastewater treatment plants and pumping stations, and to strengthen the capacity of ONAS.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Minister for Economic Affairs stressed the importance of the project, the first of its kind to be carried out under a public-private partnership. He pointed to the positive socio-economic and environmental spin-offs of this type of project (recycling of wastewater, improvement of the quality of life and the environment, etc.).
For her part, Chikhaoui announced that other projects would follow in the framework of cooperation with the World Bank.
The focus for the coming period would be on tertiary treatment of wastewater for agricultural use (fodder production, development of pastures), he added.
For his part, the World Bank official expressed the Bank's willingness to continue to support Tunisia in the implementation of its development projects, particularly those relating to water management and environmental protection.
Source: Agence Tunis Afrique Presse