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Afghanistan: Utilities

Volume 482: debated on Wednesday 5 November 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps his Department has taken to improve the (a) electricity and (b) water supply in Musa Qala, Helmand province, Afghanistan; and if he will make a statement. (232088)

Joint Department for International Development (DFID), Foreign and Commonwealth (FCO) and Ministry of Defence (MOD) funding pays for the fuel for the generator which supplies the main bazaar area of Musa Qala town. The UK provincial reconstruction team has also conducted an electrical survey and general infrastructure assessment of Musa Qala, to help the District Governor and Executive Shura plan future programmes.

Musa Qala also receives electricity from the Kajaki dam on a rotation of two days on, two days off. The Kajaki dam will provide for the long-term electricity requirements in Musa Qala. A large-scale programme to increase the power supply from Kajaki dam is being undertaken by USAID, with security support from the UK-led Task Force Helmand. Power output from Kajaki is due to double by spring 2009, improving electricity supply to Helmand, including Musa Qala.

The UK-led provincial reconstruction team in Helmand, with joint DFID, FCO, and MOD funding, is constructing two water towers and distribution centres in Musa Qala, to supply safe water to the community at a central location.

In addition, with DFID funding, 175 drinking water wells are being constructed in several locations in Musa Qala district through the Ministry of Reconstruction and Rural Development.