The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will provide a EUR 9.2 million loan to Hidroprahova SA, the water and wastewater operator for the Prahova area, north of Bucharest. The EBRD loan will help finance its EUR 146.2 million investment program, which is partially co-funded by EU Cohesion Funds and local money.
The investment program will increase the quality of drinking water and increase access to water and sewerage services in the company’s service area, serving some 170,000 people. The investment is also expected to significantly reduce SC Hidroprahova’s water losses while lowering the operating costs of the company. Once the program is completed, 96 percent of the population in the project area is expected to be connected to a safe water supply, while for wastewater the connection rate in the project area is expected to increase to 91 percent.
The project will also promote renewable energy investments as Hidroprahova plans to introduce between 3,000 and 5,000 solar panels with a total installed capacity of 0.8-1 MW in its wastewater treatment plants.
“The EBRD’s support is key to facilitating the absorption of EU funds for infrastructure upgrades in Romania. Through this new investment, the Bank is continuing to support the modernization of water services in the country, helping to improve the quality of water supply and wastewater services and align them to EU standards,” said Jean-Patrick Marquet, Director for Municipal and Environmental Infrastructure at the EBRD.
The project includes the extension and modernization of Hidroprahova’s water and wastewater networks in eight areas in Prahova county: Breaza, Baicoi, Campina, Mizil, Plopeni, Sinaia, Urlati and Valenii de Munte.
The EBRD’s EUR 9.2 million loan is a sub-project of the EUR 330 million Regional EU Cohesion Fund Co-financing Framework (R2CF) which was launched in 2010 and extended in September 2012. It supports investments in Romania’s water and wastewater infrastructure and helps municipalities absorb the financing available from EU Cohesion Funds. The EBRD estimates that these projects will bring additional investments of approximately EUR 2 billion in Romania’s water and wastewater infrastructure.
This comes soon after EBRD announced a similar loan, of EUR 13.6 million, to Compania de Apa Oltenia in southwestern Dolj county and to improve water and wastewater services in the towns of Craiova, Calafat, Bailesti.