When it comes to good wine, Kavadarci is as important to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia as Bordeaux is to France. The people of Kavadarci have been growing grapes and producing wine since the fourth century BC. The exquisite vintages have always tasted good, but the same can’t be said about the water.
A few years ago, Kavadarci, the home to southeastern Europe’s largest winery, was experiencing serious water supply problems.
“Sometimes during the summer people didn’t have access to water up to 12 hours a day,” says Ljubisha Jovanovski, a government official overseeing the rehabilitation of the former Yugoslav republic’s water supply system. “Even though the region is quite developed, the water system was flawed and unreliable.”
In fact, the entire country’s system has been outdated and in serious need of upgrades for a long time. The quality of the water had also decreased.
Impressive results across country
In 2010, the European Investment Bank and the government of FYR Macedonia signed a EUR 50 million loan to increase the water supply in rural areas and improve wastewater disposal throughout the country. The project raised water quality in most of the 84 municipalities, improving the environment and public health.