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World Bank Provides $2 Million Loan for Armenia Irrigation System Project

Friday, November 17
(WASHINGTON D.C.) – More than 630 Armenian farmers will directly benefit from improved water service delivery thanks to a US$2 million loan for Additional Financing of the Irrigation System Enhancement Project, signed today by Armenia and the World Bank.

The financing aims to further assist the Armenian government in its efforts to ensure efficient, cost effective and sustainable irrigation through the reduced use of energy and improved timing of water supplies.

Additional investments will include the construction of a tertiary system to supplement the planned Baghramyan-Norakert Gravity Scheme, as the existing tertiary system is unable to reliably deliver water directly to farmers’ plots.

The financing was originally provided only for the gravity structure, as well as a main and secondary canal. The ehabilitation of the tertiary system will therefore ensure that the benefits of the initial investment are fully realized.

“This activity builds upon the results achieved so far by the ongoing project. The Bank’s intervention will decrease water shortages experienced by farmers, increase the reliability of water supply and timely delivery, which will allow for an increase in productivity,” said Sylvie Bossoutrot, the World Bank Country Manager for Armenia. “The reconstructed tertiary system will be designed to encourage farmers to have a choice of on-farm technologies, such as drip irrigation.”

The Baghramyan-Norakert Gravity Scheme envisages the construction of a 5km long feeder canal to receive water from the Tkahan Canal- whose original source is Armenia’s Lake Sevan. The canal then delivers the water through the reconstructed gravity system to about 573 hectares of agricultural land, helping 635 farmers in the cultivation of their vineyards and orchards.

Another achievement of the project is the completion of construction of three lots of the Meghri gravity scheme, which is expected to save 30% of Armenia’s total irrigation needs. The rehabilitation of selected diversion canals has cuts annual water losses by about 23 million cubic meters.

The Additional Financing of the Irrigation System Enhancement Project is a $2 million IBRD loan with a variable spread, a 14.5-year grace period and repayment of 25 years. (