The four H2020 priority investment projects advance further
Following the completion of the feasibility studies of all four projects, the focus of MeHSIP-PPIF is now on facilitating the funding options for these projects. For two of them (Lake Bizerte in Tunisia and Kafr El Sheikh in Egypt) the EIB has undertaken joint missions with the EBRD, accompanied by the MeHSIP-PPIF team. Furthermore, the initial approval of their respective applications to the Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF) has been secured. In more detail:
- Lake Bizerte (Tunisia): the feasibility study was completed by incorporating the assessed impacts of additional industries adjacent to Lake Bizerte, which will also be part of this project. A key milestone was achieved through a final consultation mission that took place in September 2013 and included the Government, the MeHSIP-PPIF team and IFIs. This mission confirmed the strong commitment of the central and local authorities for this project to be implemented. The mission also allowed for important institutional arrangements to be discussed and addressed, including the roles and responsibilities of the various project partners. A Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF) proposal was also completed and submitted with the help of MeHSIP-PPIF in September 2013.
- Al Ekaider (Jordan): the feasibility study was completed in 2012. Notwithstanding the well established relationship and regular contact between MeHSIP-PPIF and the Government of Jordan, it has not been possible to launch the financing discussions. Despite the preliminary approval of the project’s unprecedented level of NIF support, the Government of Jordan has had to put the project on hold due to fiscal considerations.
- Lake Burullus/Kafr El Sheikh (Egypt): the feasibility study, which included the detailed design for two ‘village clusters’, was completed in March 2013. The Government of Egypt has identified this project as one of two priority projects to proceed swiftly towards implementation. Similarly to the Lake Bizerte (Tunisia) project, a final consultation mission took place in June with the Government counterparts, the MeHSIP-PPIF team and IFIs. The mission included site visits and negotiations with the Government on institutional arrangements for the successful implementation of the project. This mission demonstrated a strong level of commitment by both the Promoter (Holding Company for Water and Waste Water - HCWW) and the Beneficiary (Kafr el Sheikh Water Supply and Sewerage Company - KSWSSC), which is demonstrated by the fact that the land acquisition has already been completed for the new Waste Water Treatment Plants. Finally, a preliminary approval for a substantial NIF grant for the project has been obtained.
- Al Ghadir (Lebanon): the feasibility study was completed by the end of 2012. The detailed survey for the lacking networks along with tender documents for the detailed design of these networks under priority one area were completed and submitted in March 2013. Based on the completed Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA), the permitting process has been initiated through the project promoter (Lebanese Council for Development and Reconstruction - CDR). Both key government counterparts promoting this project (CDR and the Ministry of Energy & Water) are committed to bringing this project to fruition.