GPOBA grants US$3m to the East Meets West Foundation to Improve Access to Water Services to Rural Vietnam

Vietnam Rural Water

Hanoi, Vietnam, November 30, 2007 – The World Bank, acting as an administrator for the Global Partnership on Output Based Aid (GPOBA), signed today a grant agreement with the East Meets West Foundation (EMWF) for US$3 million to provide access to clean water services to 75 low income rural communities in five provinces located in the central part of Vietnam, through an innovative community-based approach, involving public-private partnership.

At signing of EMW Grant Agreement: Mr. John Anner, EMW's Executive Director and Mr. Ajay Chhibber, World Bank's Country Director for Vietnam.

The project is expected to benefit about 150,000 disadvantaged people in the provinces of Quang Nam, Quang Tri, Quang Binh, Quang Ngai and Thua Tien Hue. After a mid-term review scheduled for May 2009, an additional US$2m may be allocated to benefit another 100,000 people.

The project is introducing an innovative Output-Based Aid approach, designed to ensure ownership, demand-driven service provision and set the basis for long term operational and financial sustainability. For each small water scheme, EWMF will be responsible for the pre-financing and the construction. Each eligible low-income household will make a contribution towards the cost of the connection, both in monetary and in-kind forms and commit to pay for the water they consume. The local authorities provide the land necessary to develop the water supply facilities. The innovation is that GPOBA disburses the Grant in the form of a fixed and pre-agreed subsidy, as a reimbursement to EMWF, on the basis of two measurable outputs - the provision of a working household connection, and the delivery of acceptable service for a period of six months.

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