(MENAFN- Jordan News Agency)
Amman, May, 12 (Petra) -- The Aqaba Water Company (AW) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on Thursday signed an agreement to implement the Fixed Amount Reimbursement Agreement (FARA) project, which aims to rehabilitate water networks in southern Jordan.
The $33.3-million project was signed by AW Director-General Khaled Al Obaidyn and Head of USAID Office of Water Resources and Environment Andrew Lecken.
Over the span of 4 years, the project will improve the infrastructure of water networks by increasing water supply capacity, decreasing water loss by 20 percent in southern areas compared to preliminary percentages, and supporting AW in raising the efficiency of water networks.
The Ministry of Water and Irrigation has recently endorsed a strategic plan, funded by the USAID, to reduce water loss to less than 25 percent, said Water Minister Mohamed Najjar, expressing appreciation of the continuous support by the United States government.
He noted that the USAID has donated $26.453 million with a contribution of $6.926 million by AW, thus boosting efforts to address water challenges in the Kingdom.
Secretary-General of the Water Authority of Jordan Bashar Bataineh explained that the deal includes prepping a new master plan in cooperation with AW for infrastructures in the south, conducting a hydraulic study to reduce water loss, and upping the capacity of the Disi water pipeline to 12 million cubic meters (mcm) per year to be able to take in water quantities provided by the National Water Carrier Project. However, in the first stage, water lines will pump some 7 mcm a year, Bataineh noted.
He added that a new water line will also be added, in addition to building a new pump station, rehabilitating four wells in Disi to enhance their productive capacity by 25 percent, reducing energy costs, improving measures of detecting water leaks, and installing new equipment, predicting to pump an additional 3 mcm to houses and reduce energy costs by 10 percent.
Thanks to projects implemented in cooperation with USAID, water loss in the Aqaba Special Economic Zone (ASEZ) is expected to drop by 20 percent, providing 900,000 cm a year, he said.
The agreement comes within a series of similar deals signed by the USAID and the Ministry of Water to face water challenges in Jordan and support its water strategy for coming years.
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