Pehur Canal: ADB lends $86.4m

ISLAMABAD: Government and Asian Development Bank signed a $86.41 million loan for extending Pehur High Level Canal Project in Swabi and Nowshehra districts to become part of Indus basin irrigation system.
It will develop a new irrigated area of 8,727 hectares in Swabi and Nowshehra districts. These areas currently depend on rainfall for agriculture. The project will increase agriculture production by increasing water, improving water use efficiency and farm management capacity in the area.
ADB Country Director for Pakistan Xiaohong Yang, and Secretary Economic Affairs Division Tariq Mahmood Pasha signed the agreement with Khyber’s Secretary Irrigation.
Pehur project is in line with ADB’s Partnership Strategy and also included in its Business Plan. Bolstering water resources is an important step to increase farm productivity in Pakistan, said Yang. Pehur Canal will support agriculture output and raise farmers’ income, she said.
The project, also called Khyber Water Project, will be built on earlier phase of Pehur High Level Canal developed with ADB’s help by increasing water availability through new canals and 65km pipeline and improving water efficiency and capacity to secure province’s food targets.
The project, started in 1993 with ADB`s financing, had doubled irrigation supplies to about 35,800 ha; reclaimed about 8,000 ha of waterlogged land and developed irrigation in about 4,310 ha of mainly rain-fed land. The project was successfully completed in 2003.