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Thomas R. Hardy
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USTDA GRANT SUPPORTS ROMANIAN WATER INFRASTRUCTURE

TULCEA, ROMANIA (January 29, 2009) – Rehabilitating water infrastructure and improving water sanitation in Romania in furthering the country's implementation of European Union (EU) environmental standards are the goals of a USTDA grant awarded today to Aquaserv S.A., the regional water company in Tulcea County in Romania. The grant will be used to fund a study that will examine options to improve the functionality and efficiency of municipal water distribution and sewerage systems in the county, and to employ more cost-effective and environmentally sound water disinfection methods.

The $339,400 grant was conferred in a signing ceremony at City Hall in the municipality of Tulcea. USTDA Country Manager Jamie Merriman and Aquaserv General Manager Sorin Zaharcu signed the grant agreement on behalf of the U.S. government and Aquaserv, respectively.

Tulcea County is Romania's second largest in land area and its capital, the municipality of Tulcea, is located on the Danube River in an area of great importance to the ecological balance and productivity of the Black Sea. The water and wastewater system improvements that are the focus of the USTDA-funded study are a local and national priority, as Romania is scheduled to meet EU environmental standards within the next decade.

To further these objectives, the USTDA grant will fund an analysis of the water and wastewater infrastructure in the city of Tulcea. The study will examine options for pipeline rehabilitation, including "trenchless," cured-in-place technology, and options to replace the use of chlorine gas as a disinfectant for potable water in Sulina. These upgrades are expected to lead to significant U.S. exports during project implementation and generate substantial savings to the Romanian government by improving the system's efficiency, reducing soil and groundwater contamination, and eliminating the risk associated with the current deliveries of chlorine gas in the Danube Delta.

The opportunity to conduct the study for Aquaserv S.A. will be competed on the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO) website at www.fbo.gov. Interested U.S. firms should submit proposals according to the instructions in the FBO announcement. Aquaserv S.A. will select the U.S. contractor that will complete the study.

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds various forms of technical assistance, early investment analysis, training, reverse trade missions and business workshops that support the development of a modern infrastructure and a fair, open trading environment. USTDA's strategic use of foreign assistance funds to support sound investment policy and decision-making in host countries creates an enabling environment for trade, investment and sustainable economic development. In carrying out its mission, USTDA gives emphasis to economic sectors that may benefit from U.S. exports of goods and services.

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