New Zealand, China and Cook Islands Join to Improve Water Quality

September 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Water Quality

On the 31st of August 2012 a new partnership was set between New Zealand, China and the Cook Islands in order to deliver an improved water mains system in Rarotonga.

With over 14,000 inhabitants Rarotonga is the most populous of the Cook Islands. It is a famous tourist destination within the region, with sandy beaches, lagoons and reefs. The interior of the island, however, remains largely unpopulated due to lack of infrastructure.

Mr Key, the Prime Minister of New Zealand and a leader of the centre-right National Party, emphasizes that this major infrastructure project will improve water quality and address health and sanitation issues in Rarotonga. It will also ensure access to clean drinking water for communities and businesses. It will mean a much improved quality of life for local people and it will hugely improve the visitor experience. It is expected that this programme will make a major contribution to economic growth.

This project is part of an on-going commitment by the Cook Islands’ Government to develop its water and sanitation infrastructure. New Zealand and the Cook Islands have already been working together on improving the water quality of the Muri Lagoon, a paradise for swimmers, snorkelers and boaters on the south eastern coast of Rarotonga.

However this is the first time that New Zealand and China have worked together on a major development initiative in the Pacific.

The network of water mains across Rarotonga will be increased. The total cost of the project is approximately NZ$60 million (€38.3 million). New Zealand is providing NZ$15 million (€9.6 million) to assist the Cook Islands Government. China will provide approximately NZ$32 million (€20.5 million) by way of a loan.

New Zealand will provide on-going support for both water and sanitation and has held in reserve a further NZ$10 million (€6.4 million) for related initiatives in the Cook Islands.

Article source: http://www.egovmonitor.com/node/53697