$180 million to strengthen water governance

The World Bank is preparing to grant a loan of 180 million dollars to Morocco. It will go to the financing of a program of resilience and sustainability of irrigation water. This essentially involves strengthening water governance in agriculture, improving the quality of irrigation and agricultural advisory services as well as access to modern irrigation technologies.

The World Bank is accelerating and diversifying its financing for Morocco. It is preparing, according to our information, to grant a new loan of 180 million dollars to the government. Funds to finance an irrigation water resilience and sustainability program to be implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture.

This project aims to strengthen the governance of water in agriculture in a context of increasing scarcity of this resource and to improve the quality of irrigation and agricultural advisory services as well as access to modern technologies. ‘irrigation. According to an official source, the Board of Directors of the World Bank must consider this new loan before the end of March 2022. The program is structured in 3 main axes. The first concerns the strengthening of water governance in agriculture. It aims to improve the sustainable management of water resources in irrigation by reducing, in particular, the process of water allocation as well as the technical knowledge of farmers.

In this context, the program supports the creation of a pilot platform for the allocation of exchangeable water (quota) which covers 98,000 hectares belonging to 27,000 farmers in the perimeter of the Tadla. It will also support the implementation of the aquifer contract in Chtouka to improve the sustainable management of groundwater. This through the establishment of a commission bringing together the main parties concerned and the recruitment of a private operator for the monitoring and control of water withdrawals by farmers. This participatory management of the Chtouka aquifer will benefit 7,700 farmers with 23,700 hectares. Within the framework of this first axis, the program also supports the design, development and implementation of digital instruments for water management and agro-informatics. This will include the establishment of two observatories for monitoring and evaluating the impacts of modernization at plot and off-plot level, one at the level of the Tadla perimeter and the other at the level of all ORMVAs in the Kingdom. .

Modernization of irrigation and drainage services

The second axis of the program concerns the modernization of irrigation and drainage services. It consists of financing advisory services and works at the level of Tadla, Souss Massa and Chtouka. In the perimeter of Beni Moussa (Tadla), the projects aim to modernize the main irrigation canals, to build supply lines for areas benefiting from gravity pressurization and to modernize pumping stations for areas requiring pressurization. artificial, to build filtration stations. Added to this is the construction of distribution pipeline networks to replace the existing canals and the installation of outlets and associated devices, including meters to regulate, measure and control the water distributed to farmers.

In the Beni Amir perimeter, coherent projects to improve irrigation services outside the plot through the rehabilitation of the Zidania canal on the left bank of the Oum Er Rbia for the benefit of 9,567 farmers (28,700 hectares) . At the level of Souss Massa, the program aims to modernize the perimeter of Massa (18,000 hectares) through the renovation of the main Pumping Station, the rehabilitation of the main canal, the renovation of the distribution networks and the renewal of the terminals of irrigation in areas where this has not yet been done. The rehabilitation of terminals will benefit 1,793 farmers (7,750 hectares).

The rehabilitation of catches will benefit 3,970 farmers (15,550 hectares). While the beneficiaries of the rehabilitation of the main canal station and the distribution network number 4,778 farmers (18,050 hectares). The second axis of the program will also support investments for the Chtouka aquifer through the financing of water meter equipment for the 9,000 active wells in the Chtouka area. A private partner will be engaged, via a management contract, for the installation of this equipment as well as the supervision of water withdrawals. With regard to the 3rd and last axis of the program, the ambition is to improve access to advisory services and irrigation technologies on the plot. The aim is to sensitize farmers to improved irrigation technologies (mainly drip irrigation). They will also be given their knowledge and their access to these technologies, in order to improve their use of water and develop their agricultural activities (diversification of crops, better incomes and better water productivity).

The number of beneficiaries of these actions in all the perimeters where it will be deployed (perimeters of Tadla, Doukkala, Haouz, Gharb and Souss Massa) amounts to 19,650


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