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Kinmen-Fujian water pipeline nears fruition

Kinmen-Fujian water pipeline nears fruition

Taipei, May 21 (CNA) A two-decade plan to supply Kinmen with water from Jinjiang City in China's Fujian province may finally come to fruition following a high-level meeting between heads of Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council (MAC, ???) and China's Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO, ???) slated to take place on May 23. Taiwan's Water Resources Agency said that consensus on building the water pipeline have been reached, and that the final details of the agreement may be ironed out in an upcoming meeting between MAC chief Hsia Li-yan (???) and his counterpart TAO chief Zhang Zhijun (???) in Kinmen this weekend, paving the way for the inking of an contract to begin constructions. The Executive Yuan in 2014 devised a plan for Kinmen to import water from Fujian by building a 16.9 km pipeline at a cost of NT$1.35 billion (US$44 million) . The project is expected to take one and a half years to be completed and bring in 150,000 tonnes of water annually, with the amount to be expanded to 340,000 tonnes eventually. Water-strapped Kinmen residents may be relieved as soon as early 2018, according to the Water Resources Agency. The offshore county's water woes are primarily caused by a lack of rainfall, its shallow lakes, and geographical constraints that make building reservoirs and dams unfeasible. As a result, an over reliance on drawing groundwater has since caused rising tidal flooding and soil salinity. The agency said that Kinmen's daily demand of 50,000 tonnes of water for households, industries and agriculture is supplied at great costs. It said that a single tonne of water sourced from Kinmen costs about NT$50 to NT$60, and may surge to NT$70 during the summer season. In extreme drought conditions, shipments of water from Taiwan may cost as much as NT$200 per tonne, added the agency. The price of NT$10 per tonne paid by Kinmen residents is a tremendous strain on the county government and the Taiwan Water Corp. the agency said. Although the agency declined to reveal the price China will be asking for the water, it said the figure will be below current costs. The agency also noted that to ensure an adequate and stable water supply for Kinmen, it will continue to develop sources from groundwater, reservoirs, and seawater desalination. (By Milly Lin and Ted Chen)


Updated : 2021-09-24 00:16 GMT+08:00