The African Development Bank (AfDB) said Tuesday its funding portfolio towards water and sanitation services in the continent was worth about 2.6 billion U.S. dollars by the end of 2016.

AfDB said in a statement it has accelerated efforts to close a huge financing gap that has undermined efforts to avail safe drinking water and modern sanitation facilities across Sub-Saharan Africa.

Senior bank officials said that robust water and sanitation financing is key to achieving sustainable development Goals (SDGs), stability and cohesion in Africa.

“Water is central to the achievement of sustainable development goals and transformation of Africa’s economies,” said Gabriel Negatu, AfDB’s Director General for East African Regional Hub.

Negatu added that AFDB has supported innovative financing mechanism to ensure grassroots communities in Africa are supplied with clean drinking water and budget friendly sanitation facilities.

The AfDB, through its two flagship projects, Africa Water Facility (AWF) and the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Initiative (RWSSI), has complemented governments’ efforts to achieve universal access to these basic services.

According to the AfDB statement, 104 projects in 52 countries have been launched to boost access to safe drinking water under the Africa Water Facility.

Likewise, 37 projects have been rolled out in 25 countries under the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Initiative.

“The importance of water to human development and poverty alleviation in Africa is expressed in the strategic focus areas of the Bank called the High 5s-light up and power Africa, feed Africa, industrialize, integrate and improve the quality of life for the people of Africa,” the bank said.

The pan-African lender has reached out to key partners to help close a financing gap in water and sanitation sectors across Africa estimated at 6 to 14 billion dollars annually.

The bulk of funding provided by AfDB is channeled towards development of new water and sewerage infrastructure alongside capacity building for local communities to boost conservation of water catchments. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/


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