OPEC bulletin 3–4/17
Impediments to the economic development of
Lesotho have included the lack of natural resources,
vulnerability to drought and serious land shortages,
combined with the country’s dependence on South
Made up mostly of highlands, many of Lesotho’s
villages can be reached only on horseback, by foot or
using light aircraft. However, water is one of the coun-
try’s greatest natural assets. It is a source of wealth and
prosperity for the 2.1 million people of the tiny South
the development of the water sector. After all, it contrib-
utes around ten per cent to the Kingdom’s overall GDP.
A Water Sector Policy — aimed at improving the manage-
ment of water resources, the provision of water supply
and sanitation services, and overall coordination within
the sector — was adopted some years ago.
However, the lack of an adequate supply infrastruc-
ture and the uneven distribution of available water can
stillprovean impedimentto the country’ssocio-economic
Many rural people and urban poor still do not have
sustainable access to safe drinkingwater and sanitation.
Moreover, long dry periods can prove disastrous for farm-
ers trying to eke out a living in marginal areas and leave
the inhabitants of urban slums vulnerable to disease due
to poor sanitation.
Vital infrastructure provided
Since commencing cooperation with Lesotho in 1976,
close to 40 per cent of OFID’s support to the mountain
kingdom has helped fund projects in the water sector.
These funds have been used to build vital infrastruc-
ture, including dams, reservoirs, water treatment plants,
pumping stations and distribution networks.
With a GDP per capita of a little over $986 in 2014,
a life expectancy at birth of around 49 years (2010–15)
and an urban population that represents just over a quar-
ter of the total population, according to UN data, there
remain significant development opportunities to pursue.
OFID is currently appraising a follow-up opportunity
to further support the Maseru Water Supply Project.
OFID boosts Lebanese agriculture
through improved water access
In Lebanon, OFID is working with the International Fund for Agricultural
Development (IFAD) to co-fund a major project aimed at significantly increasing
agricultural productivity in the country by improving access to water. OFID’s
has this report.
orming part of the government of Lebanon’s
ambitious plan to address the pressing issue of
water security, the ongoing Hilly Areas Sustainable
Agriculture Development Project is focused
on improving living standards for rural
and war-stricken areas of the country.
OFID Country Officer for Lebanon, Ahdi
Alhunaif, explained how some 24,000
householdswouldbenefitwhen theproject is completed.
Themain expected benefits include improved income for
farmers through better crop performance.
Water andsoil conservation initiativesunder theproj-
ect aim to excavate around 30 ponds and reservoirs, as
well as five lakes, with a combined total storage capacity
of 1.5 million cubic metres.
Other works include the construction of irrigation