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Egypt gives priority to water and sanitary schemes

afrol News, 14 July - Egyptian government is planning to spend over LE 5.5 billion on water and sanitary drainage schemes to provide purified water for all its towns and villages, as part of programme to extend sanitary drainage network to cover the rest of country.

Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif said yesterday that schemes were accorded top priority in his government programmes in 2007/2008 fiscal budgets, in addition to equal sums in non-traditional financing resources.

Dr Nazif's said this at a meeting with minister of housing, utilities and urban communities, Ahmed el-Maghrabi, to review the schemes as well as national plan aimed at developing of impoverished Egyptian villages.

Speaking at same meeting, Mr Maghrabi said his ministry was seriously pushing through all water and sanitary drainage schemes, through prime minister’s urging, to accord them top priority in investment plan.

He pointed out that some LE 35 billion had been allocated for these projects in five-year plan, in addition to extra-budgetary investments from non-traditional resources at behest of president Hosni Mubarak, who insisted on implementing water and health drainage schemes in all Egyptian villages.

"Purified water had been introduced in all villages and towns with the exception of some small pockets that would be reached soon,'' the minister said, adding that renovations of water networks were being implemented to ensure round the clock water supply.

Sanitary drainage networks in cities have been completed and rural areas will soon be covered, cabinet spokesperson, Dr Magdi Radi said.

Meeting is to have also covered a follow-up of national project, which seeks to develop impoverished villages with aim of raising living conditions in an integrated manner.

Dr Nazif has appealed for a comprehensive involvement on civil society part in these projects, to play a basic role in managing them and in follow-up activities.

Six villages with 36,000 inhabitants and other nine with 45,000 inhabitants were already covered by this plan in Beni Suef and Sharqiya at a tune of LE 4.5 billion.

According to Dr Radi, second stage involved 149 villages in Fayum, Assiut, Minya, Qena, Sohag, and others.

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