ETHIOPIA – The government of Ethiopia Ethiopian has launched the construction of the Ajima-Chacha irrigation dam in the Amhara region in the north of the country.
The US$126.9 million project has been awarded to the Chinese Civil Engineering Corporation (CCEC) in partnership with Amhara Water Works Construction Enterprise.
The Ethiopian Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy, Seleshi Bekele, recently visited the Amhara region to lay the foundation stone for the construction of the dam on the Jimma River.
Construction of the reservoir, 45.5m high and 371 m long dam capable of holding 55 million cubic meters of water is expected to be completed after 3 years and will be used to develop at least 7,000 hectares of plantations.
Irrigation of this arid land and agricultural development should benefit at least 28,000 families who will grow fruits such as apples, vegetables, wheat, and barley in the Amhara region.
As part of its contract, CCEC will also lay 44 kilometres of main pipelines and 20 kilometres of secondary pipelines.
The dam is part of the Ajima-Chacha Irrigation Development Project, which is being launched just a few months after the start of construction of the Kaza Irrigation Dam in the Tigray region, bordering Eritrea and Sudan.
This water reservoir will be 57m high and 2.54 kilometre long and to carry out this other agricultural development project, the Ethiopian government has chosen Ethiopian Construction Works Corporation, Sur Construction and Afar Water Works Construction Enterprise.
The Kaza Irrigation Project will require an investment of US$ 139.4 million.
Meanwhile in Rwanda, Japan Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Japanese government’s developmental organization, handed over two rehabilitated storage dams and one new one to the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources of Rwanda, which have been under construction for over a year.
The two rehabilitated reservoirs i.e., Cyimpima and Gashara, together with the newly inaugurated Bugugu dam with a 23.7 km long wall, will irrigate over170 hectares of marshlands in Rwamagana Province, Eastern Rwanda.
The project which costed around US$20 million is set to benefit 1,174 farmers who grow mainly rice, maize and soybean.
With this project, the irrigated swamps in the Rwanda are increasing by 30 hectares as the country has a total of 589,000 hectares of marshland with only 48% irrigated.
The water supply project is also expected to improve agricultural production and increase farmers’ incomes.
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