There is a new entrant in the long list of countries which provide foreign assistance to Nepal: the Czech Republic. In partnership with the Centre for Inclusive Social Development, the Czech Republic this week handed over a drinking water well to the Machhindra Bahal community in Patan. Nepali Times spoke to Zuzana Boukalova of the Czech company Vodni Zdroje, who has been actively involved in Nepal since 2008.
Zuzana Buokalova: This project was based on a site analysis done by Czech experts in September 2011 as well as the discussions with stakeholders of Macchindra Bahal community. It is a pilot project, so we will see where it goes after this.
Is this the first of many water-related projects financed by the Czech Republic in Nepal?
Well, we would like to do more, but it all depends on the financing. Unfortunately, Nepal is not a priority country for the Czech Republic so financing projects here is difficult. But our interests do lie chiefly in hydro-geology. We completed the Eureka project in Chitwan where we tried to find ways to deal with arsenic content in the water. We also finished another project in Sankhamul where we dug new wells and installed water tanks near the Bagmati river.
Any new projects lined up for the immediate future?
Next year, we plan to start another pilot project related to artificial recharging of groundwater in Patan. We have a new partnership with the National Academy of Science and Technology and we hope that it will serve as a bridge between Nepal and the EU.