NEW DELHI, INDIA (29 August 2018) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India today signed a $375 million loan agreement to contribute to double farming incomes in Madhya Pradesh by expanding irrigation networks and system efficiency.

The Madhya Pradesh Irrigation Efficiency Improvement Project will develop 125,000 hectares (ha) of new, highly efficient and climate resilient irrigation networks, and improve water use efficiency in more than 400 villages, benefiting over 800,000 people in Madhya Pradesh.

Mr. Sameer Kumar Khare, Joint Secretary (Fund Bank and ADB), Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, signed the loan agreement for the Government of India, and Mr. Sabyasachi Mitra, Deputy Country Director of ADB’s India Resident Mission, signed on behalf of ADB. A separate project agreement was signed by Mr. A. K. Upmanyu, Project Director, on behalf of the State of Madya Pradesh.

“The ADB funds will be used to develop a large-scale pressurized and automated irrigation system for boosting irrigation efficiency,” said Mr. Mitra. “The project will support institutional innovations through introduction of a design-build-operate contracting approach.”

“The project will help Madhya Pradesh sustain its extraordinary growth in the agriculture sector through support to the state government’s irrigation expansion and modernization plan by maximizing irrigation efficiency and water productivity,” said Mr. Khare.

The project will focus on two large irrigation systems. At the first of these—the Kundalia irrigation project—it will develop 125,000 ha of new and highly efficient and climate resilient irrigation networks. The work to be undertaken includes building two large pumping stations pumping water to distribution chambers where water will be distributed through a network of buried pipes to farm outlets. The project will also help farmers to adopt micro-irrigated agriculture including high-value crops.

For the second large irrigation system, the existing Sanjay Sarovar Irrigation Project, the project will prepare a comprehensive modernization feasibility study and other preparatory work for a soundly designed project.

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 67 members—48 from the region. In 2017, ADB operations totaled $32.2 billion, including $11.9 billion in cofinancing.

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