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Albania on Wednesday signed a series of agreements with the German KfW Bank Group, aimed at improving water and sewage systems in several cities.
The EU delegation in Tirana said in a statement that Albania's Finance Ministry, Transport Ministry and water and sewage authorities had signed five financing and loan Agreements.
The total amount of the agreements is €71.7 million, and includes a grant of €25.5 million from the EU.
The funds, provided by the EU, Germany and Switzerland, will be spent on improving water utility services in Fier, Saranda, Lushnja, Berat, Kuçova, Kamza and Korca.
The aim is "to improve the regularity and quality of the water supply and sewerage disposal systems,” the EU delegation said.
Albania's water and sewerage systems in Albania have not kept apace with the need for modernization and demographic change.
The drinking water supply network is mostly old and poorly maintained, and treatment of wastewater is limited, with only two operational wastewater treatment plants in Pogradec and Kavaja.
Although the investment is large and will take until 2015 to be completed, the EU delegation head in Tirana, Ettore Sequi, underlined that the money will not be sufficient if Albania does not put upgrading water management on the agenda at central and local level.
“Failing to do so will only increase future remediation costs,” Sequi said.
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