MANILA, PHILIPPINES - Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice-President C. Lawrence Greenwood today signed grant and loan agreements with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance, H.E. Keat Chhon, totaling $37.3 million.
A $21 million grant for the Second Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project will support Cambodia's efforts to deliver improved rural water supply and sanitation to some of the poorest areas around the Tonle Sap Basin. The Northwest Road Improvement Project, a $16.3 million concessional loan, co-financed with a $25.6 million loan from the Republic of Korea, will rehabilitate 113 kilometers of National Road No. 56 connecting the provinces of Banteay Meanchey and Oddor Meanchey provinces and will upgrade a border facility with Thailand.
"The two projects will help Cambodia meet its Millennium Development Goals by improving access to safe water and sanitation, which in turn leads to better health outcomes, and by promoting economic growth and poverty reduction in the northwest region through increased cross-border tourism and trade activities," said ADB Vice-President Greenwood.
The fresh finance allows the Ministry of Rural Development to expand an ongoing rural water supply and sanitation project covering five provinces of Battambang, Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Thom, Pursat, and Siem Reap, into a sixth - Banteay Meanchey. Efforts will focus on rehabilitating existing wells, providing new water supply facilities, and encouraging sanitation behavior change at the household level. The project will work in about 400 villages. The total project costs are estimated at $25.8 million, which include contributions of $1.8 million from the Royal Government and $3 million (mostly in kind) from beneficiaries.
National Road No. 56 is a key conduit for goods and people between northwest Cambodia and northeast Thailand, and also forms a feeder connection to the GMS East-West Economic Corridor. The improved border facilities are expected to aid cross-border tourism as the restored road will connect to a key route to Siem Reap - site of the world famous temples of Angkor.