MANILA, PHILIPPINES (9 December 2021) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $350 million policy-based loan to improve urban services in India.

The loan supports the policies established by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to accelerate universal coverage of piped water supply and improved sanitation under the recently launched national program Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) 2.0 and provide affordable housing to all, including poor, urban migrant and industrial workers, under the flagship mission Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana. The program will benefit the urban poor, including other disadvantaged, economically weaker section and low-income groups.

“This loan supports the government’s agenda in transforming cities into economically vibrant and sustainable communities, continuing ADB’s long-term engagement with India to improve basic urban services delivery in various states,” said ADB Principal Urban Development Specialist for South Asia Sanjay Joshi. “Efforts to improve urban water supply, sanitation, and affordable housing as well as performance-based fiscal transfer will help the country accelerate reforms in urban service delivery and COVID-19 recovery initiatives.”

India’s current estimated urban population of 460 million is the second-largest in the world and is projected to reach nearly 600 million by 2030, growing at an annual rate of over 2%. As urban areas will continue to contribute over 60% of gross domestic product, cities will become a strong engine of growth for India—generating economic activity and outputs, creating jobs for a significant volume of workers, improving competitiveness and urban livability, and protecting the environment.

ADB will provide knowledge and advisory support to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs in program implementation, including monitoring and evaluation. It will also help select low-income states and urban local bodies to implement policy reforms, prepare investment plans, and provide recommendations on cross-cutting issues like climate change, environmental and social safeguards assessment, and gender equality and social inclusion.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

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