Red Sea-Dead Sea secures EIB backing
The landmark Red Sea-Dead Sea Water Conveyance Project has come a step closer to reality with Jordan signing a technical cooperation agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Agence Française de Développement.This agreement aims to define and promote the best option to satisfy current and future needs for domestic water supply in Jordan, as well enabling economic growth and adapting to climate change's impact on water resources.
Under the terms of the agreement, EIB will conduct three studies in cooperation with AFD covering economics and financial analysis as well as environmental and social impact.
The Red Sea-Dead Sea project will develop water infrastructure mainly composed of an intake facility and desalination plant in the proximity of the Red Sea and brine pipeline connecting the desalination plant to the Dead Sea. The project is expected to produce 65 MCM/year of desalinated water for Aqaba (Jordan) and Eilat (Israel) and discharge up to 235 MCM/year of mixed brine and sea water to the Dead Sea.
Part of a landmark regional water sharing initiative between Jordan, the Palestinian Authority and Israel, it aims at producing of desalinated water from the Red Sea for selling to Israel and Jordan, while releasing of water by Israel from Lake Tiberias for selling to Jordan. The project will also impact on massive influx of refugees in the region by providing an increased water supply to Jordan and neighbouring countries.
EIB Vice-President Dario Scannapieco said: "This technical cooperation is an important milestone for the success of the Phase-1 of the Red Sea Dead Sea project. [The] Water sector is a key priority for EIB in the Mediterranean countries. So in the context of the urgent need for potable water in Jordan, this is important to develop a secure and potential water supply for Jordan and the region while saving the Dead Sea from environmental degradation."
This new technical assistance follows up previous and on-going technical cooperation financed by France for the preparation of the project since 2008.
The technical operation is funded by a European Union's grant provided via the Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF), a financial instrument which aimed at supporting the partner countries in the European Union's eastern and European and southern neighbourhoods.