The China National Complete Engineering Corporation has funded a US $449m water supply project in Zambia set to benefit approximately 1m people. The Kafulafuta water supply system project was launched by President Edgar Lungu earlier on this week. It is aimed at providing drinking water to 1m people in several cities across the Copperbelt province.
According to media reports, the works will be financed through a loan from China. The construction will then be implemented and funds disbursed through the China National Complete Engineering Corporation. In the coming weeks, the latter will begin construction of the Kafulafuta dam, which can hold 123 million m3 of water. The water will then be pumped by two stations and transported to four treatment stations. This will be via a network of pipes yet to be laid.
On the other hand, the China National Complete will be tasked with the building of pipelines and repair of old ones in the areas not served by the drinking water distribution network. Such is the case in several cities in Copperbelt Province. To successfully develop all these infrastructures, the Chinese company will have to rely on the local workforce. It estimates that the entire project will create 6,000 jobs during the construction phase.
According to the Zambian president, the project demonstrates, the government’s commitment to provide universal access to safe drinking water for all by 2030. This, he says, is also in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It will improve access to water and sanitation in Copperbelt province.
The Chinese ambassador to Zambia Li Jie said that the construction and operation of these projects will help Zambia meet the challenge of inadequate public facilities. This is while raising the level of public health services and providing a strong guarantee for the socio-economic development of the Copperbelt province.