The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to provide $36.52m financing package to help improve wastewater management systems and strengthen water supply and sanitation facilities in the two lakeshore cities of Balykchy and Karakol on Issyk-Kul Lake in Kyrgyz Republic.
ADB is providing the assistance under the Issyk-Kul Wastewater Management Project which includes a $23.68m loan and a $12.84m grant from the Asian Development Fund. This financial support will help in upgrading the existing wastewater treatment plants in the two lakeshore cities under the project, which were constructed back in the 1980s.
Balykchy has a population of 47,000 and is located at the western extremity of the lake, while Karakol, has a population of about 76,000 and is located at the lake’s eastern part.
However, only about 30% of the population in Balykchy and about 45% of residents in Karakol are connected to the centralized wastewater systems, which can treat only about 8 million liters per day of wastewater.
The project can help to improve and upgrade the wastewater systems in the two lakeshore cities through the construction of 21.6km of sewerage, 1.7km of effluent outfall pipelines, and a new pump station.
A reservoir in Karakol will be desludged by removing 100,000 cubic meters of sludge, while providing seven septage vacuum trucks. This will strengthen the capacity of vodokanals, or enterprises responsible for water supply and sanitation services in Balykchy and Karakol.
The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2024 and its total cost is estimated to be $41.82m. The Government of the Kyrgyz Republic has committed to provide $5.3m for the project.
ADB Central and West Asia urban development specialist Ruoyu Hu said: “The clear waters and rich biodiversity of Issyk-Kul lake in the eastern region of the Kyrgyz Republic attract many visitors.
“However, this growth in tourism has also meant an increase in environmental concerns. The project will help address these concerns by improving wastewater management systems and services in two of the cities surrounding the lake.”
The Kyrgyz Republic joined the development bank in 1994. Through its partnership with ADB between 2018 and 2022, the country is expected to receive $641m in grants and loans.