The General Commission of Water Resources has signed a contract with the Russian Stroy Trans Gas company to begin the implementation of the first phase of the Tigris irrigation project.
The first phase includes the building of the main pumping station in the area of Ein Diwar area at an overall cost of some 193 million Euros, (30 billion SP).
The project will see water drawn from the Tigris River with a total amount of 125 million cubic meters annually, with a monthly pumping rate of between 10 and 100 cubic meters per second.
The Minister of Water Resources, Bassam Hanna, outlined the economic significance of the project for development of the sprawling eastern region, saying the project will irrigate a new area extending over 150,000 hectares and an exisiting area of 64,000 hectares.
This will bring the total area irrigated by the project to somewhere near 214,000 hectares, the minister said, significantly increasing on the exisitng projects on the Euphrates.
Speaking to journalists, Hanna said that the project falls under President Bashar Assad’s directives to improve the living conditions of citizens, hailing it an important juncture to alter the agricultural landscape in the Tigris and Khabour basin.
He also cited a significant added value to the project which, the minister said, is an important lever to achieve agricultural security.
The Minister of Agriculture Ahmad al-Kadri, for his part, said the project is ranked among the significant project developments in a region that primarily depended on the rain for irrigation, also highlighting its significance for developing the eastern region.
The Charge d’Affaires of the Russian embassy in Damascus told journalists that the project will ensure more opportunities to the residents of the eastern area to develop agriculture, citing a pressing need in Syria to improve agricultural conditions during droughts.
Translated and edited by the Syrian Observer