Govt finalises funding for Zinwa unbundling

tyettytewater1Business Editor—
The Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate is at different stages of finalising funding facilities totalling $74 million from three institutions which will give impetus to the commercialisation and unbundling of the Zimbabwe National Water Authority. This comes after Government approved the creation of a national water and waste water regulator and the commercialisation and unbundling of the current ZINWA. The coming on board of a water and waste water regulatory board will help clarify the issue of overlapping roles between ZINWA, the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority and the Environmental Management Authority.

Some of the overlaps among the three entities that need streamlining include the issuance of hydro-power licences, water quality testing and, river outline plans as they relate to wetlands.

Director of water resources, planning and management in the Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate Tinayeshe Mutazu who recently headed a study mission of the Dutch water sector said in pursuant of the objectives of commercialising ZINWA, three key directorates had been identified, all of which would require funding.

He said the Government was currently finalising facilities from the World Bank’s Zim Reconstruction Fund, Belarus equipment facility which is being spearheaded by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and the buyers-credit facility from the Export Import Bank of India.

“Government has identified three units under which will be part of the unbundled ZINWA. These are ground water, water supply and dam construction.”

The ground water directorate will be pushed through using an already existing company under Zinwa; Live Water.

Mr Mutazu said Government was finalising a $33,8 million Eximbank India facility earmarked for the Zinwa’s water supply stations. This, he said, would be used in the procurement of pumps, motors from India to rehabilitate water stations. Of that amount $8 million will be used to procure drilling rigs for Live Water.

“We are expecting a seven-member Indian delegation mid-February to finalise the facility.”

Mr Mutazu said the water supply directorate would deal with raw water, bottling water while it also provides clear water on delegated authority from Government for smaller towns which have limited capacities such as Mutoko and Karoi.

“This unit will benefit from a $20 million facility from the World Bank’s Zimref fund and $14 million of the funds will be applied towards upgrading seven small towns which are managed by ZINWA.”

The balance will go towards the creation of a water and waste water regulator. The third facility is the $100 million Belarus equipment facility which is being coordinated by the RBZ. “Of that amount, the water ministry will get $20 million to be applied to dam construction equipment. Overall, we are comfortable with the facilities as they will help the unbundling process.”

The African Development Bank recently approved a 2 million euro facility for upgrading the Marondera water treatment plant.

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