The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a US$161 million loan to help develop an integrated wastewater management system in Tashkent Province, Uzbekistan. The multilateral development bank will also administer an US$800,000 technical assistance grant to help implement institutional reforms and capacity building. Half the amount will be financed by the Spanish Cooperation Fund for Technical Assistance and the other half by the Republic of Korea e-Asia and Knowledge Partnership Fund.
“Modern and reliable water supply and sanitation services are key to unlocking the economic potential of large urban agglomerations such as Tashkent Province, which serves as Uzbekistan’s economic engine,” says ADB director general for Central and West Asia Eugene Zhukov. “This project builds on our earlier work to increase access to safe and reliable water supply in the country, while promoting environmental sustainability, climate resilience, and best health practices.”
Less than 20% of Tashkent Province’s population is connected to sewerage systems, while the rest rely on pit latrines and earth ditches – practices that threaten public health and environmental quality.
The sewerage system in urban areas has not been expanded since 1991, while wastewater treatment plants and networks are no longer functional. Rural settlements have no wastewater services, resulting in the discharge of large quantities of untreated wastewater into the environment.
The project will upgrade centralized urban wastewater systems in the six cities of Akhangaran, Almalyk, Angren, Bekabod, Chirchik, and Yangiyul, as well as in the urban centre of Chinaz. It will support the construction and rehabilitation of wastewater treatment plants and sewerage networks, and the installation of water meters to benefit more than 800,000 people.
The project will install septic tanks and provide access to decentralized sanitation systems for 136,000 people in 70 rural settlements in Chinaz, Yangiyul, and Zangiota districts. It will help build the capacity of the provincial water supply and sanitation utility, Tashkent Suvtaminot, through training and management support.
“This project will introduce smart water supply and sanitation management solutions that include digital technologies such as artificial intelligence, remote sensors, and analytics,” says ADB senior urban development specialist Jung Ho Kim.