The Urban Water Supply and Sewerage System, whose construction was supported by Germany, the European Union and the City of Banja Luka, was officially inaugurated in Tunjice in Banja Luka on 18 January 2016. The system, worth 19.1 million Euro, will now secure an environmentally sound and sustainable water supply at socially acceptable costs, contributing to the improvement of living conditions of the local population.
The system will help combat existing problems of high losses in the present water supply system and lack of adequate sewage collection, provide for secure and sustainable supply of drinking water and ultimately contribute to achieving EU standards in water quality. Its most direct beneficiaries will be the citizens of Banja Luka, in particular those in Tunjice and Karanovac who will for the first time gain access to water supply and wastewater collection in the area.
Hans-Joachim Fuchtel, Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, called the water supply and sewage system “a good example of cooperation between Germany and Bosnia and Herzegovina”. He added: “Germany has been supporting the project very actively. That highlights that our development cooperation means engaging in the interest of the people living here.”
“The Water Supply and Sewerage Collection System that we are inaugurating today is yet another example of how the EU’s support delivers tangible results and concrete impact on the lives of citizens of Banja Luka, and improves their quality of life,” said Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark, Head of EU Delegation and EU Special Representative in BiH. Ambassador Wigemark also stressed that energy, transport and environment sectors in BiH were still without country-wide sectoral strategies due to which the country is currently not eligible for additional financial support. “Further progress in this area will meet BiH’s needs regarding compliance with the EU legislation and help improve quality of country’s citizens“, he said.
The improvements achieved include rehabilitation of water supply system in Caire, extension of water supply to up to additional 14,000 people in Tunjice, connection of around 3,400 people to the water supply between Karanovac and Novoselija, as well as management of the sewage collection along Vrbas.
Major part of the project was financed through grants and loans from the German Bank for Reconstruction and Development (KfW) of around 14 million Euro, while the EU provided 4.5 million Euro, and the City Banja Luka contributed with 600.000 Euro.