Finnish Water Forum effort to assists Kyrgyzstan in water sector development

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (Bank) started municipal operations in the Kyrgyz Republic in 2009 with the signing of the Bishkek Water Project. In 2011 the Kyrgyz Republic Water and Wastewater Framework was approved. The Bank has since signed the Naryn Water project under the framework in 2015.

Naryn Water Project implemented in close cooperation with the Government of Switzerland. The Government of Switzerland and the Bank will provide a total of €5.2 million to improve the water and wastewater infrastructure. The Bank will provide a loan of up to €2 million, while the Government of Switzerland (Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs – SECO) will provide capital grants of €3.2 million for the project. Switzerland has a longstanding partnership with the Kyrgyz government in the urban water and sewerage sector. Since 2009, Switzerland has been engaged in 4 cities (Bishkek, Osh, Jalalabad and Kant) on a co-financing basis with EBRD.

Today water supply operations in the Naryn have several serious problems: deteriorated assets for water supply and wastewater collection; very limited wastewater treatment; high operations and maintenance costs due to the deteriorated state of the assets; unreliable water supply; outbreaks of water borne disease, especially during the summer; and low institutional capacity to manage operationally and financially sustainable water supply services. The aim of this Project is to achieve maximum impact under existing affordability and public debt constraints in the country.

Finnish company FCG (member of Finnish Water Forum), as a main Consultant, is responsible for institution building assistance to the Naryn Water Company in form of a Corporate Development Programme (CDP) and a Stakeholder Participation Programme (SPP). The CDP will guide the day-to-day operations of Vodokanal and open access to external funding. Raising public awareness on issues related to the project implementation and water use through establishment of the Water Users Committees (“WUC”). The engagement includes the specific events, for example, Project Presentation at City Hall. For representatives of City Council, City Administration, local NGOs and general public (via heads of local opinion makers).

“Participation in CB2East Project substantially helps FCG operation in Central Asia in water and environmental sector in general and in Kyrgyzstan particularly” – noted Project Manager Iakov Dondych. “Cooperation with international and local partners as well as with local authorities, established through CB2East Project, is substantial part of FCG success in Kyrgyzstan. Consultants like FCG starts first and then during the project implementation stage will open possibilities for contractors and suppliers” – continued Iakov Dondych, “Kyrgyzstan is country with rich history, challenging reality and promising future due strategical location and rich human and natural resources. It is very interesting market for the Finnish companies and for FCG. Finns have much to give to Kyrgyzstan but in other hand have much to learn from Kyrgyz people, conclude Iakov Dondych!”