Rabat, Morocco, April 28, 2010—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, today signed an agreement with the government
of Morocco to support private investment in a new desalination and irrigation
plant that will help improve the water supply to a vital agricultural region.
IFC will advise the Ministry of Agriculture
on structuring a public-private partnership to build the desalination and
irrigation plant in the Chtouka area, a region near the coast that relies
heavily on agriculture. The demand for water in the area has grown together
with trade to Europe, depleting the aquifer in the region.
The plant will have an estimated annual
capacity of between 60 and 85 million cubic meters. IFC will help ensure
that the project is financially and environmentally sustainable.
“This project will restore a
sustainable balance in water use in Chtouka and maintain the high value
added of agricultural production in the area," said Aziz Akhannouch,
Minister of Agriculture and Marine Fisheries.
“Encouraging private investment in
infrastructure and ensuring the environmental sustainability of projects
are IFC priorities in the Middle East and North Africa. The desalination
and irrigation plant in the Chtouka area will support agriculture, an important
industry in Morocco, and help create jobs for the surrounding community,”
said Rashad Kaldany, IFC Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa.
The project builds upon IFC’s previous
work advising and helping the Ministry of Agriculture to implement Morocco’s
first public-private partnership, the El Guerdane Irrigation plant.
IFC’s advisory services programs work
with governments to structure commercially viable public-private partnerships
to help increase access to and improve the quality of public services,
constraints, and attract private sector expertise and investment.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to
escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic
growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development,
mobilizing capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk
mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments
totaled $14.5 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing
countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.