The European Union (EU) has provided 1.2 million euros as grant to conduct climate change impact assessment study in Swat basin for Munda Dam multipurpose project, located in Mohmand Agency of the Federally Administered Areas (Fata). A joint venture comprising two renowned firms namely AHT of Germany and Nespak of Pakistan has also been appointed as consultants to carry out the studies.
With a view to discuss the matters relating to Munda Dam in particular and other the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) projects in general, Wapda Chairman Raghib Shah held a meeting on Monday with the delegation comprising representatives of the EU and the consultants. The delegation was led by the EU Head of Operation in Islamabad Berend De Groot.
Speaking on the occasion, Wapda Chairman said that Munda Dam project is of immense importance for socio-economic development and poverty alleviation, as it will ensure water for irrigated agriculture, control floods and generate low-cost hydel electricity.
Thanking the EU for their support, he said that the grant will help implement this vital project. The Chairman informed the delegation that at present detailed engineering design and the tender documents of Munda Dam project are being prepared, for which French development agency FD has committed to provide 11 million euros to Wapda.
Underlining the need of foreign assistance for completion of the projects, he expressed the hope that the EU would also provide financial support for construction phase of Munda Dam project. It is worth mentioning that Munda Dam Project will store 1.29 million acre feet (MAF) of water for irrigation, while power generation capacity stands at 740 mega watt (MW), contributing about 2.4 billion units of electricity to the national grid every year. Benefits of the project have been estimated at Rs 20.2 billion per annum.
The Chairman also briefed the delegation about other projects being executed in water and hydropower sectors. Berend De Groot said that the EU would continue to support Wapda in implementation of its projects. He assured Wapda Chairman to explore the ways and means to further enhance the mutual co-operation for future projects.