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PRESS RELEASE

World Bank Approves Additional Funds for Tuvalu

November 1, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC, November, 01 2013 – The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved US$6.06 million in additional finance for the existing Tuvalu Aviation Investment Project (TvAIP) which has been designed to improve operational safety and oversight of international air transport and associated infrastructure.

The new funds will be used to scale up the ongoing project to support the resurfacing of key roads on Fongafale Island which provide access to the Funafuti airport. The additional funds will also be used for solar street lighting, a road safety awareness campaign, and for the purchase of maintenance equipment. Additionally, an 800,000 liter water cistern will be constructed to improve the drinking water supply for local residents.

“The World Bank is pleased to provide these additional funds to the Government of Tuvalu so critical road infrastructure can be repaired and improved,” said Franz Drees-Gross, Country Director for the World Bank in Timor-Leste, Papua New Guinea, and the Pacific Islands.

The grant is provided by the International Development Association (IDA) and is part of a series of projects implemented under the Pacific Aviation Investment Program (PAIP) that are designed to increase aviation safety and security in the Pacific, focusing on developing key airport infrastructure for international travel such as runways, navigation aids and lighting; aviation sector reform, and improving airport management and operations.

The Tuvalu Aviation Investment Project (TvAIP) is the first-ever IDA-financed investment in Tuvalu. The original TvAIP financing in the amount of US$11.85 million was approved on December 13, 2011. The project is financing the resurfacing of the runway, a new terminal, as well as provision of improved navigation aids, a fire tender, other safety related equipment, and training.

Many Pacific Islands countries face challenges related to their remote, geographically dispersed locations and small populations. Safe and reliable air services are needed to connect people in the Pacific Island countries to each other and to larger markets, and to facilitate important industries such as tourism.

Media Contacts
PRESS RELEASE NO:
2013/166/EAP