(San Antonio, Texas) The Board of Directors of the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) and the North American Development Bank (NADB) held its semi-annual meeting today at which 6 projects totaling US$38.1 million were certified and approved to receive US$28 million in loans and an additional US$2.37 million in grants. These projects wil benefit a population of 723,546 residents of the border region.
These projects include 5 separate water and wastewater improvement projects for the Mexican communities of Tijuana and Playas de Rosarito, Baja California. The Comisión Estatal de Servicios Públicos de Tijuana, (CESPT) is responsible for providing water and wastewater services to both Tijuana and Playas de Rosarito. CESPT is undertaking 4 separate projects to expand its wastewater collection and treatment systems for the areas of Colonia Aztlán, Colonia Independencia and Colonia Lomas de Rosarito in Playas de Rosarito., as well as to expand the Rosarito I Wastewater Treatment Plant. A fifth project being undertaken by CESPT will expand the potable water system in Tijuana, including the construction of two new storage tanks with a capacity of 2.4 million gallons. The project will also expand wastewater collection in Tijuana, providing connections and new service for 15, 667 residences. All together, these projects represent a total investment of US$37.8 million by CESPT for Tijuana and Rosarito. The NADB is providing a loan for $380 million Pesos (US$27.96 million at an exchange rate of $13.59 Pesos to the Dollar). CESPT is also receiving grant funds in the amount of US$2.2 million from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Border Environment Infrastructure Fund (BEIF), administered by the NADB.
The BECC-NADB Board also certified a project for the expansion of the water distribution system in Colonia Esperanza, Chihuahua. The project, with a total cost of US$ 333, 444 will provide new waterlines, 360 new residential water connections, and will install a chlorine disinfection system. The project is receiving US$166,722 in grant funds from the EPA’s BEIF program.
Despite challenging market conditions over the last year, the BECC and NADB continued to develop, finance and construct needed infrastructure projects throughout the border region in both Mexico and the United States.
“Given the current conditions that are restricting sources of financing, the Bank, together with the BECC, is emerging as a solid alternative for financing environmental projects for the border,” stated Chairman of the Board, Lic. Ricardo Ochoa Rodríguez, Head of International Affairs Unit, Mexican Ministry of Finance and Public Credit.
The Board of Directors heard reports from the BECC and NADB, outlining recent project and financial activities, including the recent complete capitalization of the Bank by the U.S. and Mexico.
“On behalf of the United States Treasury, we welcome the final capital contributions by the United States and Mexico, which fulfill the financial obligations of our two countries to the NADB,” stated co-chairman of the Board, Karen Mathiasen, Director of the Office of Multilatral Development Banks for the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
In its 14 years of operation, BECC has certified 159 environmental infrastructure projects along the U.S.-Mexico border, which represent a total investment of approximately US$3.23 billion. NADB is providing approximately US$964.5 million in loans and grants to support 128 of those projects. BECC-certified and NADB-financed projects are estimated to be benefiting almost 12 million residents of the U.S.-Mexico border region through improved infrastructure for a cleaner environment.