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Jordan needs huge investment in water projects

Over $700mn required in just two years to cope with Syrian refugee influx.

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Wastewater treatment is sorely needed in Jordan
Wastewater treatment is sorely needed in Jordan

Jordan needs to invest over JOD 500mn ($700mn) during the next two years to address the huge demand for water as a result of hosting massive numbers of Syrian refugees.

Water minister Hazem Nasser said the ministry also needs another JOD 1.5 mn in urgent assistance to drill wells in the northern region before the start of summer, according to a statement e-mailed to The Jordan Times.

Jordanians are sharing the burden of water shortage with Syrians, highlighting that refugees and local communities cannot be separated, the minister said during a meeting with an official German delegation last Thursday.

Nasser add that Syrian refugees make up over 30% of the northern region's population.

The German delegation commended Jordan's efforts in managing the water sector under the current conditions, and expressed their government's commitment to providing Jordan with all kinds of support.

The delegation included representatives from the German federal ministry for economic cooperation and development, the German Development Bank and the German Development Cooperation.

They affirmed their government's plans to provide Jordan with additional assistance, especially in the water sector, according to the ministry statement.

Also on Thursday, Nasser met with a US delegation, headed by Kenneth Hyatt, deputy undersecretary for international trade, and urged the US government and institutions to support and develop Jordan's water industry.

He said the Kingdom is keen on expanding cooperation with the US in the field of wastewater technologies, especially the treatment of industrial wastewater.

The minister added that US support for the sector enabled the country to alleviate the pressure on water as a result of hosting massive numbers of Syrian refugees, which has raised water demand to record levels.

During the meeting, Nasser briefed the delegation on the ministry's plans and programmes to manage the water sector and its campaign to protect networks and aquifers from violations.

Hyatt expressed the US government's interest in expanding investments and commercial cooperation with Jordan, as well as providing solutions in the field of water management.

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