World Bank provides $400 million to enhance support for rejuvenating the Ganga
The World Bank and the Government of India today signed a loan agreement to enhance support for the Namami Gange programme that seeks to rejuvenate the Ganga river.
The Second National Ganga River Basin Project will help stem pollution in the iconic river and strengthen the management of the river basin which is home to more than 500 million people.
The $400 million operation comprises a loan of $381 million and a proposed Guarantee of up to $19 million. The agreement for the $381 million loan was signed today by Shri Sameer Kumar Khare, Additional Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance on behalf of the Government of India and Mr Qaiser Khan, Acting Country Director (India), on behalf of the World Bank. The Guarantee instrument will be processed separately.
Shri Khare said that the Ganga is India’s most important cultural, economic and environmental resource, and the government’s Namami Gange program seeks to ensure that the river returns to a pollution-free, ecologically healthy state. The new project will extend the Government of India and World Bank’s engagement in this critical national programme to make the Ganga a clean, healthy river.
The World Bank has been supporting the government’s efforts since 2011 through the ongoing National Ganga River Basin Project, which helped set up the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) as the nodal agency to manage the river, and financed sewage treatment infrastructure in several riverside towns and cities.
Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General of the National Mission for Clean Ganga, said that the continuity provided by the Second National Ganga River Basin Project will consolidate the momentum achieved under the first World Bank project, and help NMCG introduce further innovations, and benchmark its initiatives against global best practices in river rejuvenation.
- Ongoing National Ganga River Basin Project
- Helped set up the National Mission for Clean Ganga
- Helping build sewage collection and treatment infrastructure in 20 towns along the mainstem of the Ganga
- 1,275 MLD sewage treatment capacity created
- 3,632 km of sewage network built
- Helped foster public mobilization for Ganga rejunivation
The $400 million operation includes a proposed Guarantee of up to $19 million to backstop the government’s payment obligations for three Hybrid-Annuity-Model Public Private Partnership (HAM-PPP) investments on the Ganga’s tributaries. “This is the first-ever IBRD Guarantee for wastewater treatment and the first IBRD Guarantee in the water sector in India and is expected to help free up public resources in the current economic situation,” said Shri Satheesh Sundararajan, Senior Infrastructure Financing Specialist and co-TTL for the Guarantee.
The $381 million variable spread loan has a maturity of 18.5 years including a grace period of 5 years. The $19 million Guarantee Expiry Date will be 18 years from the Guarantee Effectiveness Date.