Maputo, Mozambique, 29 Jan – The World Bank plans to invest US$1.7 million in carrying out a feasibility study on the participation of the private sector in water supply management in Mozambique.
An agreement to that end was signed Thursday in Maputo by the interim representative of the World Bank in Mozambique, Luiz Tavares, and the president of the Water Investment and Resources Fund (Fipag), Nelson Beete.
Currently, water company Águas de Moçambique, which is owned by Águas de Portugal, is responsible for the water supply service in the city of Maputo and the municipal areas of Matola and Boane, in the south, and in the cities of Beira, Quelimane, central Mozambique, Nampula and Pemba, north, covering a population of over 4 million people. The contract ends in 2014.
The agreement that has been signed outlines that the project should be carried out in stages: The first, between February and October of this year, is a period in which strategic options will be established with a view to promoting the involvement of Mozambican operators and consultation of interested parties to prepare the bidding process.
In the second phase, which will run from October to June 2011, the bidding will be carried out along with contracting of operators in the northern, central and southern regions of Mozambique and the centre of Maputo.
The convention between Mozambique and the World Bank is part of the reforms that are being implemented by the Mozambican authorities with a view to entirely complying with the Millennium Development Goals outlined by the United Nations, to ensure access to drinking water to over half of the population by 2015.
Government figures show that, last year, drinking water reached 60 percent coverage, as compared to 32 percent when reforms began to be implemented in 2000. (macauhub)