KfW finances Euro 82 million Tunisian desalination project

KfW Development Bank is to loan €82 million ($95 million) to Tunisia for a desalination plant in Zarat, Gabes Governorate, reports Tunis Afrique Presse.

The contract, signed by Tunisia’s minister of development, investment and international co-operation Zied Laadhari, KfW director Sven Neunsinger, and Mesbah Helali, chief executive of Tunisia’s national water utility SONEDE, implements an agreement from 2016. The Tunisian government will provide €14.5 million.

The funds are for a 50,000 m3/d desalination plant with potential to increase capacity to 100,000 m3/d by 2027, three water storage tanks, and a pumping station. Construction is expected to begin by end of 2018, and the plant to be operational in 2021.

The new plant forms part of a wider scheme of water projects designed to increase supplies and reduce reliance on groundwater sources in Tunisia.

The first phase of the scheme, already complete, cost TND 40 million ($15.6 million), and involved constructing 10 small desalination plants in locations including Medenine, Kebili, Tozeur, and Tataouine. Phase two involves constructing six desalination plants in southern Tunisia, including in Sidi Bouzid, Gafsa, Tozeur, Kebili, and Medenine.

KfW Development Bank has reportedly earmarked €300 million for water projects in Tunisia.

Tunisia officially opens its first desalination plant, in Djerba (May 2018)

Tunisia’s SONEDE details programme of desalination plants (February 2018)

Tunisia’s SONEDE secures $328 million for Sfax sweater desal project (July 2017)

KfW signs Djerba desalination loan agreement in Tunisia (August 2013)