Home / Politics / Policy /  World Bank to provide $318 million loan for Tamil Nadu irrigation projects

New Delhi: The World Bank will provide a $318 million loan for modernisation of irrigation projects in Tamil Nadu and help small and marginal farmers improve water management and adopt climate resilient techniques.

The project will also help increase market opportunities for small and marginal farmers. A tripartite agreement has been signed on Tuesday between the central government, the World Bank and the Tamil Nadu government, an official statement said.

“About 500,000 farmers, of which a majority are small and marginal, are expected to benefit from improved and modernised tank irrigation systems," it said. Under the Tamil Nadu irrigated agriculture modernisation project, about 4,800 irrigation tanks and 477 check dams across 66 sub-basins will be rehabilitated and modernised to deliver bulk water to irrigation systems in the state.

Tamil Nadu is a water stressed state that continues to experience water shortages which are expected to exacerbate in future, said Sameer Kumar Khare, joint secretary, department of economic affairs, ministry of finance.

“Rehabilitating and modernising irrigation tanks will improve the reliability and availability of irrigation water for farming communities, making them less prone to climatic hazards. More than 160,000 ha of currently partially irrigated lands will come into full irrigation under this project," Khare said.

This project will help Tamil Nadu scale up its efforts to unlock the full potential of its agriculture sector. It will support farmers improve efficiency of water used in farming, diversify into high value crops and produce crops that are resilient to increasing threats of climate change, said John Blomquist, programme leader and acting country director, World Bank, India.

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