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BECC-NADB Board of Directors met in Ciudad Juarez to consider new projects

Posted on July 25, 2012

BECC-NADB Board of Directors met in Ciudad Juarez to consider new projects

Six projects with an estimated cost of US $264.3 million were approved for certification and US $180 million in funding approved for projects that will benefit 1.9 million residents of the U.S.-Mexico border.

Karen Mathiesen, Vanessa Rubio and Eduardo Baca at the Private Meeting of the BoardThe Board of Directors of the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) and the North American Development Bank (NADB) had a full working day on July 17th in Ciudad Juarez. The Board held a private meeting in the morning, a public meeting in the afternoon, and managed to hold a press conference in between.

During these meetings the Board considered new projects, discussed strategic priorities, reviewed the status of NADB financial operations, and considered a new evaluation process to assess the environmental and health impacts of completed projects.

During the private meeting, the Board approved the certification of six new projects with an estimated cost of US $254 million that together will receive loans and grants totaling US $179.7 million and will benefit nearly two million residents in various communities along the United States-Mexico border region.

An announcement that had been long awaited by Juarez residents was the certification and funding of a comprehensive road paving project to enhance urban mobility in this community, which will allow the construction or rehabilitation of 15 roadways and six vehicle overpasses, with an estimated cost of US $156 million. This project will contribute to improve air quality in the region by facilitating traffic flows and reducing travel times through improved road conditions.

Governor Cesar Duarte highlights the importance of this project for Juarez"The urban mobility project is intended to revitalize the city. The challenge is implementing it in nine months to achieve a quality transportation system that enables residents to get to their jobs, schools, or recreation sites in less time," said Chihuahua Governor Cesar Duarte-Jaquez, who thanked the BECC-NADB Board of Directors for approving the US $138 million in funding. He added that this approval reflects "the confidence that Juarez has regained for investments."

The Project of Urban Mobility is good news for Juarez said Mayor Hector MurguiaIn his appreciation speech, Juarez Mayor Hector Murguia Lardizabal said that "the objective of this project is to build roadways that give the city a competitive edge and to have a circuit of the same quality of those existing in Houston or San Antonio, Texas, as well as benefitting the most disadvantaged areas of the city," he said.

This project, as noted by Governor Cesar Duarte, is the first of its kind to be implemented at the local level using a public-private partnership scheme under the Chihuahua State Law of Long-Term Public Investment enacted in May 2011.

Projects approved for funding also include two in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, consisting of infrastructure works related to the city’s water and wastewater systems, storm drainage, paving and other road improvements that will help reduce air, soil, and water pollution. These works also include the replacement of sewer lines to prevent untreated wastewater discharges into the Rio Grande River.

Also in Tamaulipas, the Board agreed to provide funding for projects in the cities of Miguel Aleman and Matamoros, to continue implementing their certified projects for wastewater collection improvements. The project includes a new 540-liter wastewater treatment plant to provide service to Matamoros.

Lastly, the Board of Directors voted to award a US $450,000 grant to Starr County, Texas (located across from Miguel Aleman), to finance part of a solid waste transfer station that was recently built. This will be the final project to be funded directly under the Solid Waste Environmental Program (SWEP), which has formally been closed.

The Board of Directors welcomed the first selection of finalists under the Community Assistance Program (CAP) –a grant program launched in 2011 to support public projects in the border’s poorest communities, and look forward to final approval in the coming weeks.

Board chair Karen Mathiasen, the Director of the Office of Multilateral Development Banks at the U.S. Treasury Department, said: "The Board held very substantive discussions, underscoring the significant contributions of NADB and BECC to the border region."

Co Chair Vanessa Rubio announced the approval of six projectsVanessa Rubio Márquez, Head of the International Affairs Unit of the Mexican Ministry of Finance and Public Credit, as Board co-chair stated that, "Without neglecting the traditional areas of the Bank and Commission’s mandate, Mexico welcomes the opportunity to explore projects in new areas, such as renewable energy and border crossings, as proposed by the management of both institutions, including innovative investment vehicles that may foster public-private partnerships."




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