June 17, 2022 (ENA) The World Bank has extended a 405-million-USD grant agreement to support the Ethiopia government’s endeavor to control the impact of COVID-19 epidemics and support the Ethiopia Ground Water for Resilience Project.
Out of the total grant awarded, the 210 million USD financial support given for the ground water project was signed online by Ethiopian Finance Minister Ahmed Shide and Boutheina Guermazi, World Bank Director for Regional Integration for Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and North Africa yesterday.
The 210-million-USD grant will be used to support the government’s endeavor to support the Ethiopia Ground Water for Resilience Project, it was learned.
The resource will be used to increase the sustainable access and management of ground water in the Horn of Africa’s border land, and the project is part of the regional HoA initiative that aims to strengthen the resilience of targeted communities through the management and collaborative use of the ground water resources.
Despite the notable potential for ground water in Ethiopia, studies show that the national ground water knowledge coverage for Ethiopia stands at only 17 percent.
The lack of knowledge on ground water (GW) is attributing to high failure of ground water sources, uncontrolled abstraction of GW sources and ultimately inefficient management, according to the statement of Ministry of Finance.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, World Bank Country Director Ousmane Dione said “we are fully committed to support the government to realize quality and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for the overall COVID-19 response efforts which Ethiopia is currently undertaking.”
Today’s grant agreement also targeted to support the fight against the impact of COVID-19 pandemic by allotting 195 million USD.
The resource will be used to support the costs of expanding activities of Ethiopia’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Project, it was indicated.
“With respect to water, especially when it comes to ground water, I believe building resilience to drought, especially on border lands, on arid and lowlands of Ethiopia is fundamentally important,” he noted.
Finance Minister Ahmed Shide said the ground water project is very timely in responding to the severe drought that Ethiopia is facing by addressing the systemic water shortage issues in a sustainable manner.
All targeted Woredas under the project are highly vulnerable to various climate shocks, including drought, he pointed out.