Germany supports improved water supply for population of Kabul
Enlarge image Ambassador König together with Minister of Finance Dr. Zakhilwal (left), Dad Mohammed Bahir, Director General of the Afghan water authority (right) and Engineer Latif (far left) during a tour through the new administration building, which has been built with German assistance (© German Embassy Kabul) The German Ambassador Rüdiger König inaugurated today (June 18th, 2011), together with the Afghan Minister for Finance, Dr. Omar Zakhilwal, as well as the Director General of the Afghan Water Administration, the newly built joint headquarters of Kabul Water Supply, KWS, and the state owned water supply system operator, Afghanistan Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Corporation, AUWSSC.
The building is part of the project “Extension of the Kabul Water Supply System" funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, (BMZ). The long term aim of this project is to improve access to clean drinking water for a total of 1,5 mill people in Kabul. Currently in Kabul only 10 to 15 % of the population have access to the roughly 38.000 household connections of Kabul Water Supply. A further 15 – 20 % of the people use public water pump stations or other water supply networks, where the water quality is often unsatisfactory. Enlarge image In his opening remarks Ambassador König gave a summary of Germany's engagement to improve water supply in Afghanistan. (© German Embassy Kabul)
Ambassador König underlined in his speech the importance of supply with clean drinking water for the population, especially the children of Afghanistan, where water-borne diseases contribute to one of the world highest child mortality rates.
Overall less than 15% of the Afghan population have access to a safe water supply, free from health hazards. Therefore, the supply with clean drinking water is a priority of the Afghan government as well as a focus area of Afghan-German development cooperation. Since 2002 Germany has established itself as a leading donor in the area of urban water supply with projects in Kunduz, Herat, Faizabad, Balkh, Imam Sahib and Kabul. In 2010 the BMZ has agreed to a further extension of water supply in those Northern provinces where German development cooperation currently has its main focus.
The new administrative building was built by German Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau, KfW, on behalf of BMZ. BMZ committed in 2011 €12 mill for the project, with an overall commitment to the water sector of €17 mill.