Residents of the Vitebsk oblast in north Belarus will get access to clean drinking water thanks to an EBRD loan of up to €15.5 million to the main regional water utility.
The funds will finance an investment programme by the Vitebsk Oblast Water Company which will bring water quality in compliance with relevant World Health Organisation and EU standards.
For this, excess iron will be removed from ground water in 80 small settlements across the oblast. 80 new iron-removal facilities, financed by the loan, will be installed by end-2022 and will be designed to improve water supply quality in small settlements.
The loan is part of the EBRD Belarus Water Sector Framework. It will help establish a mechanism for a countrywide “de-ironing” programme. It will be supported by the EBRD grant funding of around €0.5 million, which will finance necessary project due diligence and implementation work.
The Project is consistent with the Green Economy Transition (GET) approach. The GET approach seeks to increase the Bank’s volume of green financing to 40 per cent of the EBRD’s annual investment by 2020.
Since the start of its operations in Belarus in 1992, the EBRD has invested almost €2.46 billion in 114 projects in various sectors of the country's economy.