By: L.N. Reklai

August 24, 2016 (Koror) The long awaited Koror-Airai Water Improvement project broke ground on Wednesday at Ngetmeduch, Koror.

The $17 million dollar ODA from Japan to Palau will overhaul the Koror-Airai Water System, according to PPUC CEO Kione Isechal.


The project scope includes installing new 16” transmission pipelines from Ngeruluobel Water Treatment Plant in Airai to Ngerkesoaol Tank in Koror.  It will install 10” transmission pipelines from PVA area to the new 250,000 gallon tank to be constructed in Malakal.

The project will also replace the 80-year old asbestos cement water pipes in downtown Koror and re-configure the Koror-Airai Distribution Zones to eliminate areas receiving water directly from Koror –Airai Treatment Plant.

“This project will greatly improve the quality of life for all Palauans, our health, our businesses, education, the entire community’s well-being,” stated President Remengesau in his remarks.

“Japan has helped Palau on many major projects such as roads, bridge, power and ports and this is one of the biggest projects that Japan has provided, costing about $17 million dollars.  This is all due to our close relationship with Japan,” expressed President Remengesau , thanking the people and government of Japan.

According to PPUC CEO Kione Isechal, the project will improve the water pressure to many residences and business customers and reduce the water leakage from 49% to below 20%.  “This will have significant impact on water pressure as well as cost savings alone,” stated CEO Isechal.

“This grant aid will greatly improve the living conditions and life expectancy of the people of Palau,” asserted Kione.

The grant application was submitted in 2013 through the Office of the President.  According to CEO Kione, it took 3 years to get to this point due to studies and assessments that had to be made first.  On May 28, 2015, the grant was approved and signed.  On May 11, 2016, bid for the project were awarded under the supervision of JICA to Tobishima Corporation of Japan.

The project is expected to be completed by March 2018. [/restrict]