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$500m World Bank grant for water resources in Sudan

June 2 - 2021 KHARTOUM
A woman draws water from a deep well in Malha, North Darfur (File photo: Mohamad Almahady / Unamid).
A woman draws water from a deep well in Malha, North Darfur (File photo: Mohamad Almahady / Unamid).

Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Yasir Abbas has announced that the World Bank has provided a $500 million grant to the ministry. In a statement to the official Sudan News Agency (SUNA), the minister explained today that he met with the World Bank Director for Middle East, Ousmane Dion, to discuss the detailed procedures related to the implementation of the grant. He said the grant is divided into two funds, one of $300 million for irrigation projects and another $200 million for the drinking water sector. 

The announcement of the grant follows a visit to Sudan by the Deputy Director of the World Bank, Hafez Ghanem, last week, during which he was received by Chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council, Gen. Abdelfattah El Burhan, Prime Minister Aldallah Hamdok, as well as holding meetings with the Ministry of Finance about means of obtaining more funding from international institutions to support projects for achieving the goals of the transitional period and to reach the stage of sustainable democracy. Ghanem announced a $2 billion fund from the World Bank to finance infrastructure projects in Sudan and to support displaced people.

Ghanem said that he was pleased to meet Hamdok following the great success of the Paris Conference earlier this month, which he described as “very important”.

In a statement following the session of the Paris Conference dealing with Sudan’s international debt (currently estimated at around $80 billion), Hamdok announced that Sudan’s debt arrears to the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the African Development Bank (ADB) have been cleared, further paving the way for Sudan’s re-entry into the international financial community, and for Sudan’s economic recovery.

The Paris Conference, which was attended by a large number of representatives of countries, international institutions, and businesses, was organised to support the democratic transition in Sudan and encourage international investments and partnerships.

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