Technical support for the implementation of the components “Heightening the Bou Heurtma dam” and “Modernizing infrastructure of the Medjerda-Cap Bon Channel”

Detailed description of project:

The mobilization of conventional water is a constant in the Tunisian water policy. Water resources from the north of the country are important and highly required to balance the deficits of irrigated agriculture in the densely populated Cap Bon area and Sahel regions. 405 million m³ are transferred from northern and central reservoirs to the coastal zone. As part of Integrated Water Resources Management, a development strategy was put in place to ensure sustainable management of water resources while considering its ecological, social and economic value. This project aims to cover the water deficit of the central region through an improved control of surpluses in the Medjerda Valley. In this context, the following elements are considered important and have been identified and agreed upon by the General Directorate for Dams and Major Hydraulic Works (DGBGTH) and KfW:

1 - Heightening the Bou Heurtma dam

The Bou Heurtma dam, completed in 1976, provides water for 25,000 ha of irrigated area located in the Medjerda Valley. A certain volume of water from the reservoir is intended for irrigation; however, needs continuously be increased, whilst the available capacity of the reservoir has decreased due to sedimentation. The objective of this assignment is thus to increase the capacity of the reservoir.

2 - Modernizing infrastructure of the Medjerda-Cap Bon Canal

The objective of this component is to modernise the infrastructure of the Medjerda-Cap Bon Canal (MCBC), which is the main pipeline for water transfer in Tunisia. The project aims to enhance water security and increase the water use efficiency, especially in ensuring the sustainable operation of the Laroussia reservoir to safeguard (i) the drinking water supply for the population of Greater Tunis, Cap Bon, Sahel and Sfax regions and (ii) the irrigation of 19,000 ha of agricultural land.

Assigned objectives:

  • Assessment of the increased hydraulic capacity of the Medjerda-Cap Bon canal;
  • Rehabilitation of the Laroussia dam;
  • Increasing the capacity of the pumping station Foundouk Jedid;
  • Protection of the control valves equipment and of the two pumping stations with an automatic screening system;
  • Remote management and automation of the Medjerda-Cap Bon canal.

Type of services provided:

  • Review of previous studies, including the revision of existing feasibility and detailed design studies on the heightening of the Bou Heurtma dam;
  • Development of the preliminary design study for the Laroussia dam;
  • Diagnosis of the pumping station Fondouk Jedid;
  • Development of detailed design studies and preparation of bidding documents;
  • Support to tender evaluations and contract awards;
  • Development of engineering studies;
  • Regular progress reporting to Client and KfW;
  • Safeguard project management procedures are accordancing to German financial cooperation regulations;
  • Construction supervision;
  • Preparation of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA).


BMZ through KfW
09/2015 – 08/2020
Contract value: 3,908,483 €