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Improve municipal drinking water utilities in Iraq, AFD, Minka Middle East
AFD and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have signed, on Monday, March 1st, a 13 million euros Minka grant agreement for a project that aims at reducing the structural vulnerabilities of the drinking water service in urban centers in Iraq. This new project is a continuation of a previous 10 million euros funding allocated to the ICRC in 2018 and used to support the reconstruction and the development of the drinking water service in Iraq.

The entire Iraqi territory faces the challenge of sustainable and equitable access to drinking water and sanitation facilities. The security, political and economic situation in the country has only worsened this public health problem. In urban centers in particular, the water service suffers from an infrastructure that is in a poor condition, and from sub-optimal management leading to poor technical performance, lack of reliability of the service, and a strong dependence on the availability of water, electricity and financial resources, which all remain limited. All these elements constitute vulnerabilities for the service on which the ICRC will provide its support and expertise.

The project is part of the approach developed by AFD to optimize the impact of its actions in contexts of chronic crisis, which is the case of Iraq. The project aims to contribute to the improvement of social well-being and the reduction of inequalities, in particular related to gender, and to the sustainability of the service through actions aimed at allowing better control of the system by the public operator.

"With this project, AFD is capitalizing on the technical achievements of the previous project, the relationship built with the water authorities and the experience of the ICRC. AFD is now providing additional funds for targeted actions to improve the water service in urban areas, in a context where needs remain massive. This is one of AFD’s strategic priorities in Iraq," comments Luc Le Cabellec, AFD’s Director for Jordan and Iraq.

"The decades of armed conflict and instability in Iraq have had a devastating impact both on the people and on the public institutions responsible for providing essential services to the people. This new project funded by AFD responds to the needs created by chronic crises and identified by the ICRC. It will allow us to work for a lasting solution by strengthening local capacities," adds Fabrizio Carboni, ICRC Director of operations for the Middle East.

This project is part of the Minka Middle East Initiative, through which AFD has contributed since 2017 to reducing Iraq's fragilities and supporting its reconstruction.

Contact project:  Frédéric Turlin