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World Bank Approves $434 million to Improve Water Circularity and Efficiency in Türkiye

WASHINGTON, May 23, 2023—The World Bank Board today approved a total of $434.7 million in financing for the Türkiye Water Circularity and Efficiency Improvement Project. This innovative operation will help address the challenges of climate change-induced water scarcity and reduce wastewater pollution in water-stressed areas.

The project will improve wastewater and reuse services; increase irrigation services services and efficiency; and strengthen institutional capacity and coordination for managing water circularity in selected areas in the country.

This will enable more than 1 million people to access improved wastewater collection and treatment services and reduced environmental pollution, and nearly 5,000 farmers to benefit from improved access to irrigation services, which will help increase productivity, income, and livelihoods.

“Water is essential for life and critical for sustainable development in economic sectors such as agriculture, energy, health, and tourism. With this project the World Bank is pleased to support Türkiye move towards a more resilient, green, and inclusive growth path at a time when the challenges of climate change are increasingly noticeable” said Humberto Lopez, World Bank Country Director for Türkiye.  

Türkiye is a water-stressed country, with climate change and  increasing urbanization and economic activities adding to the already high risks to its water security. Over two-thirds of the country’s 25 river basins are facing water scarcity.

Water quality is another major concern due to widespread water pollution from the discharge of untreated industrial and domestic wastewater and pollution from fertilizers and pesticides. One-third of Türkiye’s lakes and up to half of its rivers are currently considered ‘highly contaminated’ by nutrients, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen mainly linked to pollution from municipal wastewater and agricultural runoff.

Despite Government efforts to improve sector performance over the past decade, Türkiye’s irrigation sector is still characterized by widespread inefficient irrigation schemes and obsolete infrastructure based on open channel and flood systems that contribute to substantial losses and unsustainable use of increasingly scarce water resources in many areas. The project will support Türkiye’s efforts to build resilience to climate change through appropriate adaptation and mitigation measures that will mitigate growing risks linked to water scarcity and pollution and sustain water services delivery for irrigation.

“In the long run, the project will contribute to improved public health, enhanced sustainable use and integrated management of water resources, strengthened climate resilience, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions,” said Sanyu Lutalo one of the Task Team Leaders of the project.



In Ankara:
Tunya Celasin
In Washington:
Indira Chand
+1 (703) 376-7491


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