Rehabilitated Irrigation Canal benefits over 7,500 people in Bangi District, Takhar

Taloqan, Takhar, 02nd January 2019 – Yesterday, the provincial authorities and the Afghan-German Cooperation have formally inaugurated an eight-kilometre long irrigation canal in Bangi District, Takhar province. The newly rehabilitated irrigation canal is benefiting more than 7,500 local residents in the villages of Ghorchi, Gurog, Kata Qeshlaq and Jamshid of Bangi District. The Afghan-German Cooperation’s Regional Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) financed the project at a total cost of about AFN 101.8 million. The whole construction works took about 16 months.

Mr. Ahmad Farid Zaki, Acting and deputy Governor of Takhar province expressed: “RIDF programme is one of the most successful and effective programs of Germany in our province.

Today we are happy for embracing the inauguration ceremony of this vital irrigation canal that will supply enough water for agricultural lands.  From this project many people, both man and women, have benefited through temporary job opportunities. Their financial income in the area was significantly increased during implementation phase and we are thankful for the generous support of the German Government; therefore, I request residents and relevant institutions to take care of the project for its operation and maintenance.”

Every year, the seasonal flooding used to severely damage the canal, especially the local intake. The local population devoted a lot of time and resources to continuously repairing the canal, but it did not sufficiently supply water for the surrounding agricultural land and orchards.

The construction works included the rehabilitation of eight kilometres canal, a new intake and four wash culverts for cross drainage. Now, the new facilities have substantially increased capacity to irrigate farmlands. The high quality construction works will also resist seasonal flooding, safeguarding agricultural lands, roads and residential houses. As a result, 250 additional hectares of land has been reclaimed and the total area of cultivable land has increased to 750 hectares (3,750 Jeribs). Moreover, the canal provides reliable clean energy to two hydroelectric stations and five flourmills in the district.

I am cordially thanking the German Cooperation support through KFW Development Bank for the rehabilitation of this canal and added: “The poorest and disadvantaged community from Gorug irrigation directly benefited.  Many job were created and additionally the agricultural product significantly increased”.

Mr. Faizurrahman Haidery, District Governor of Bangi thanked the German Cooperation support and stated: “from strategic dimension this canal is one of the most important for irrigation. For many years it was under flood threat and was frequently repaired by communities.., but today our big problems have been solved in the area.”

In addition to the new irrigation system and the power supply, the project created many job opportunities for the local people and communities that significantly helped improve the living conditions in the area. About 80 people received jobs during the construction phase. The construction materials for the projects were acquired from the local markets.

Throughout the implementation period, engineers and managers from Taluqan River Basin Agency (TRBA) attended on-the-job trainings, and coaching sessions offered by RIDF. These activities aimed at improving the TRBA’s capacities for identifying, managing, implementing and maintaining similar projects independently in the future.

The Regional Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) is being implemented by KfW Development Bank on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The programme aims at improving economic and social infrastructure in Northern Afghanistan while enabling provincial administrations to plan and implement development programmes independently. In the past 7 years the programme has funded and constructed/rehabilitated more than 160 kilometres of roads, 50 kilometres of irrigation channels and 11 protection dams against flooding or erosion in the provinces Balkh, Kunduz, Baghlan, Takhar, Badakhshan and is now implementing two school rehabilitation projects also in Samangan. At the same time, the programme has organised about 900 job-specific on-the-job trainings, coaching and seminars for more than 3,000 engineers and governmental employees facilitating the independent realisation of future infrastructure projects.