Ethiopia is awaiting decision by the World Bank this week for the provision of an additional 60 million dollars of funding for an irrigation project in the Nile Basin, an official of the Ministry of Water and Energy said yesterday.
Ethiopia's request for additional funding will be presented to the World Bank on Thursday, 23 June 2011 according to Hayalsew Yilma, programme coordinator of the Ministry of Water and Energy.
Wold Bank has provided 100 million dollars since 2008 to support the Nile Basin Irrigation and Drainage Project, Hayalsew said.
The 60-million-dollar project is intended for the irrigation of 20,000 hectares (49,421 acres) of land to help subsistence farmers in north western Ethiopia become sellers of surplus crops. Studies are being conducted on the potential for an additional 97,000 hectares to be irrigated.
Ethiopia aims to increase the amount of irrigated land fivefold to around 10,000 hectares by mid-2015, Hayalsew said. As long as the projects do not cause significant harm to countries downstream, the Bank may approve the funding, he said. According to the Ministry of Water and Energy, about 2.2 million hectares of Ethiopia's 3.7 million hectares of irrigable land is found in the Nile Basin.
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