BAKU, Azerbaijan, June 7. To modernize Kyrgyzstan's irrigation networks, investments of some $800 million are required, while an additional $400 million is needed to ensure access to clean drinking water for the remaining villages, Trend reports.
This announcement was made by Akylbek Zhaparov, the Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Kyrgyzstan at the Bishkek Water Forum.
"The issue of water resource management is very relevant, with the World Bank (WB) and the government taking the lead. Together, we will be able to unite other financial institutions in this direction," he said.
According to Antonella Bassani, the WB's Vice President for the Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region, water is a crucial condition for economic growth and development. In Central Asian countries, annual rates of economic growth could decrease by 6 percent of GDP by 2050, due to water scarcity.
In turn, Saroj Kumar Jha, the Global Director for the WB Group's Water Global Practice, said that there should be more investments made for more efficient water management.
He also emphasized that it is important to unite the partner efforts to provide clean water access for each person.
The Bishkek Water Forum, organized by the World Bank and the Cabinet of Ministers of Kyrgyzstan, is currently underway in Kyrgyzstan’s capital. It serves as a platform for experts in the water sector and influential individuals to work together in resolving water-related challenges in Kyrgyzstan and the Central Asian region.
The central theme of the discussions revolves around the management of water resources.