The Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation signed contracts for five projects with the Social Fund for Development (SFD) to protect the Nile river in five governorates on Monday.
The projects will also include the establishing of a waterways network in the five governorates and will cost a total of EGP 41m.
Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Hossam El-Moghazy said the contracts will keep the Nile River in the governorates of Giza, Luxor, Qaliubiya, Beheira and Assiut. Four projects to protect Nile embankments are valued at approximately EGP 37.6m, with one project to remove weeds from the Nile and clear small canals in Assiut governorate will cost of EGP 3.5m.
El-Moghazy added that the projects will provide about 2,179 direct jobs, in addition to project maintenance jobs.
“Last October, the value of the contracts that were signed about the treatment of small canals and protecting the embankments of the Nile amounted to EGP 282m, and thus the cooperation investments between the ministry and the SFD during two and a half months are valued at EGP 323m,” El-Moghazy added.
SFD Secretary-General Soha Soliman said these projects come as part of the Emergency Labor Intensive Investment Project (ELIIP), which is funded by the World Bank (WB) and the European Union (EU). Its total value is $300m, and will provide access to basic infrastructure services which require intensive labour, in addition to the third agreement of a German debt swap.
The German debt swap agreement, valued at €30m, was signed in December 2005, with 50% allocated to support the national budget. The other 50% is to be used to finance a public works programme that is being implemented by SFD. This amount included funding for paving rural roads, drinking water and sewage projects in poorer villages and cover waterways.
Soliman added that carrying out Nile protection projects run in cooperation with the governorates and through local private contractors. They are undertaken under the supervision of the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation and the Public Administration of Protection and Development the Nile River in the projects’ governorates.
The head of the Irrigation Department, Fathy Gouily, revealed that the total investments of projects, signed between the Ministry and the SFD over three years since 2012 has amounted to EGP 421m. These projects provided 2.6 million jobs for the preservation of Nile embankments, the treatment of small canals and the removal of weeds from waterways.
These five new projects come within the framework of the national campaign for the protection of the Nile, which was organised by the ministry earlier this month. The campaign, run in coordination with the ministries of Supply and Environment, is to remove contaminants from the Nile, providing clean water to citizens.