DHAKA, – The government today signed with the World Bank (WB) two additional financing agreements totaling US$74 million to improve the e-government services and air quality of Dhaka city, reports BSS.
Of the amount, $39 million will be spent for the Leveraging ICT for Growth, Employment and Governance (LICTGEG) Project, which aims to scale-up the e-Government infrastructure and services, through which all government ministries and agencies will be able to avail shared technology infrastructure for their systems and services.
Another $35 million additional funding will be used for Clean Air and Sustainable Project (SASP) to address Dhaka’s environmental, transport and traffic challenges, and help improve the city’s air quality.
Rajashree Paralkar, Acting World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh and Mahmuda Begum, additional secretary of the Economic Relations Division signed the agreement today at the Economic Relations Division in the city.
According to WB, poor air quality in urban area creates serious health hazards, adversely affects environment and quality of life. By reducing exposure to urban air pollution by 20%, Bangladesh could save 1,200 lives annually and avoid 80 million cases of diseases.
The additional financing will help establish five additional air quality monitoring stations, in addition to the 11monitoring stations supported by the project and a central air quality laboratory.
The financing will also help establish mobile air quality labs at all divisional offices for better monitoring and enforcement of air emissions from industrial sectors. Further, the project will continue support to operationalize the traffic signals and address mobility needs of people with disabilities.
The credits from the World Bank’s International Development Association, its grant to low-interest loan arm, have a 38-year term, including a six-year grace period, and a service charge of 0.75 percent.