The African Development Bank Group, has approved a $15 million grant from the African Development Fund (ADF) for a water supply and sanitation project in Malawi, expected to provide jobs and boost the livelihoods of nearly 300,000 people.
The Nkhata Bay Town Water Supply Project will improve access to potable and sustainable water supply and sanitation services, directly benefitting 60,000 residents of Nkhata Bay and its surrounding areas, as well as 220,000 others who depend on services offered by the town.
The project is also expected to create more than 300 jobs during its construction phase and 50 additional jobs during its operation.
Nkhata Bay, a fast growing port town on Lake Malawi, is a main link on the Mtwara development corridor, connecting Malawi, Tanzania and Zambia. It is also gaining popularity as a tourist destination and will benefit greatly from the project, which will kick off in January 2019 and would be completed at the end of 2022. Board approval for the project was granted on October 22, 2018.
About half the estimated project cost of US$30.4 million, will come from the ADF grant, while a US$12 million loan from OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) to be administered by the Bank, and US$3.4 million from the Government of Malawi, in counterpart contribution, make up the rest.
New infrastructure water treatment plants, pipelines and water reservoirs to be built as part of the project is expected to increase Nkhata Bay residents’ access to potable water from 37% to 90% and access to sanitation facilities from 45% to 85%.
The project has enhanced social accountability and partnership between the town and the government due to the inclusion of Nkhata Bay Town residents and surrounding areas in consultations during the design of the project, an exercise that will continue throughout the project’s implementation.
The African Development Bank Group is committed to supporting the Malawi government in its efforts to build a productive, competitive and resilient nation.
The Bank is confident that the approved resources will back Malawi’s development agenda contained in the Third Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS III) and Malawi’s Vision 2020.
Statistics indicate that in Malawi, only 6 percent of the rural population has access to improved latrines. Only 0.1 percent of mothers wash their hands with soap at all critical times such as before preparing food, eating, changing babies’ nappies, after using toilets, and feeding babies.