The EU Cohesion Fund and the EBRD are joining forces to modernise and upgrade the water and wastewater services in Argeș County in Romania.
The EBRD is providing a €11.8 million loan to S.C. Apa Canal 2000 S.A., co-financing a regional investment programme for water supply and wastewater facilities and networks under EU Cohesion Fund financing for Romania.
A Municipal Support Deed was signed today at the EBRD in London, in the presence of his Excellency Ion Jinga, the Romanian Ambassador to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Romanian delegation was led by the Mayor of Pitesti, Tudor Pendiuc.
Technical cooperation support for the project will be provided by the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund, to assist the regional operating companies through a Framework-wide benchmarking programme for water operators in Romania as well as through procurement benchmarking.
The EBRD loan will be used to finance infrastructure for drinking water treatment and distribution as well as wastewater collection and treatment, for the populations of the towns of Costești, Pitești, Ştefăneşti and Topoloveni, and the surrounding areas, in the central part of Argeș County.
The investments are expected increase access to and quality of water and wastewater services in the service area, where over 250,000 people will benefit from improved water and wastewater services, in accordance with EU directives.
Thomas Maier, the EBRD’s Managing Director for Infrastructure, said: “We are proud today to be able to announce the first signing in municipal and environmental infrastructure in 2014. It shows our commitment to continuing the efforts to improve urban infrastructure, particularly water services, in Romania, and in helping the country to absorb EU cohesion funds.”
The EBRD’s loan is the 21st investment under the Bank’s Romania EU Cohesion Funds Water Co-Financing Framework, launched in 2010. The facility was originally approved in November 2010, with a volume of €200 million, and further increased by €130 million in September 2012, following strong local demand. To date, the EBRD has mobilised approximately €2 billion of EU funding in Romania’s water and wastewater facilities.
Since the start of its operations in the country the EBRD has invested approximately €6.4 billion across over 343 projects in Romania, and has further mobilised over €14 billion for these ventures from other sources of financing.