Preparing the Irrigated Agriculture Improvement Project, Cambodia (TA 9349-CAM)

Name of Client:
Asian Development Bank (ADB)


Length of Consultancy Assignment:
Start Date: 25 September 2017
Completion Date: 31 December 2018

Detailed Narrative Description of Project:

The transaction technical assistance (TRTA) prepared the design of an investment project that will: (i) rehabilitate, upgrade, modernize, climate-proof, and deliver improved irrigation services to four selected irrigation systems or subprojects (Kamping Pouy Sin Battambang, Prek Po in Kampong Cham, Canal 15 in Takeo, and Stung Chinit South [SCS] in Kampong Thom); and (ii) support capacity development for agency national and provincial staff as well as water users. The TRTA also produced detailed engineering designs incorporating climate adaptation measures for floods and droughts management for the Kamping Pouy and Prek Po subprojects, including bidding documents for the ensuing project and its subprojects.

The ensuing project is expected to enhance water and agriculture productivity in the project area. The project aimed to have two outputs. Under Output 1: Efficiency and climate resilience of irrigation systems enhanced, the project will upgrade, modernize, and climate-proof irrigation infrastructure, including reservoirs and canals, in four irrigation systems to ensure dry season irrigation for about 43,500 ha of agricultural land in Cambodia. Project investments will include the: (i) remodeling and improvement of main, secondary, and tertiary canals as well as appurtenant structures in the four selected subprojects; (ii) design of joint reservoir operation (JOROP) for Mongkol Borey and Kamping Pouy reservoirs and irrigation scheduling to improve water sharing arrangements between linked systems and tensure equitable water distribution, particularly during droughts; (iii) creation of three new farmer water user communities (FWUCs) (one each in Prek Po, SCS, and Canal 15) and formation of additional farmer water user subgroups (FWUSGs) for the existing FWUC in Kamping Pouy, as well as training of the organized FWUCs in the subproject areas to equip them for the operation and maintenance (O&M) of the distribution canals; and (iv) development, establishment, and piloting of an irrigation asset management information system (IAMIS) in the selected subprojects to help improve O&M budgeting and management of irrigation assets. In Output 2: Water resource management improved, the project will finance various activities including the following: (i) supply and installation of hydro-meteorological (hydromet) stations for water resources monitoring in the subproject areas and upstream watersheds; (ii) modernization of irrigation O&M, including irrigation scheduling and water allocation agreements, water distribution, cropping plans, system maintenance plans, and irrigation service fee (ISF) collection; (iii) training of staff of relevant government departments and farmer water user communities (FWUCs) on a wide variety of subject matter; (iv) establishment of a National Water Management Data Center (NWMDC) including a building equipped with appropriate data management facilities (Doppler radar, server system, desktop-based data system, dissemination facilities, etc.) for use in data/information collection, analysis, and dissemination; and (v) development of a water resources information system (WRIS) to serve as a common platform for managing hydrological and rainfall data and data generated by water accounting (WA) through remote sensing countrywide.

PRIMEX, as lead firm, was responsible for the overall management of the TRTA, including the conduct of feasibility studies of four irrigation subprojects, the preparation of detailed engineering designs and tender documents for two of the four subprojects, the design of the NWMDC and WRIS, as well as the provision of support to ADB in the preparation of a Concept Paper for a water resources management multi-tranche financing facility (MFF) for implementation by the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology (MOWRAM). More specifically, the PRIMEX TRTA Team: (i) carried out a rapid analysis of the current irrigation and water resource management (WRM) situation in the identified provinces to identify key issues that need to be addressed by the ensuing project; (ii) prepared criteria for the selection of provinces and selection of irrigation subprojects; (iii) developed the project’s design and monitoring framework (DMF); (iv) assess the technical, financial, and economic viability and the likely social, environmental, and climate change impacts of the proposed subprojects; (v) prepared feasibility study reports for each of the identified subprojects based on the prior viability assessment and social and environmental analyses; (vii) conducted due diligence (financial management, procurement capacity assessment) and risk assessment of the entire project; (vii) prepared detailed engineering designs and bidding documents for two subprojects; (viii) drafted the project Report and Recommendations of the President to the Board of Directors (RRP) including linked documents (including the Project Administration Manual [PAM]) and supplementary documents; and (ix) assisted the ADB Team Leader in the finalization of the RRP. PRIMEX also organized several national and local-level workshops and stakeholder consultations and subcontracted the services of local firms to conduct topographic, socioeconomic, and bird habitat surveys in the subproject sites.