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Bangladesh’s Second-Biggest City Gets World Bank Water Funding

Chittagong, the main port and second-biggest city in Bangladesh, is undergoing $185 million in water production, sewer system and infrastructure works, almost all of it financed by the World Bank.

The Chittagong water and sanitation project that’s about two years from completion was undertaken because the Bay of Bengal city of 5 million suffers from inadequate water production, “only able to cater to 40 percent of the total estimated demand,” the bank said in a statement.

As there are “no water-borne sewerage systems and storm-water drainage services in Chittagong,” the bank in a project update yesterday urged the Water and Sanitation Authority to expedite Modunaghat’s water-treatment plant and pumping facilities improvements “to address the widening gaps between water demand and production in Chittagong.”

Bangladesh has “made great progress in water supply with the widespread use of tube wells,” according to Unicef’s website, with 97 percent of Bangladeshis having access to a water point. Due to the discovery of arsenic in groundwater, only 76 percent of these “can now be considered safe,” it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Randall Hackley in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Randall Hackley at

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