G-77 meet focuses on sustainable use of water


The forum will look into ways of exchanging scientific and technological expertise and sharing of experiences and best practices among developing countries.

The importance of water preservation and rational consumption draws great international attention and is considered to be one of the most pressing problems that all countries have to deal with. On a global scale, nearly 1 billion people have no access to clean water and 80 per cent diseases are due to polluted water and shockingly, average of 1.5 billion children die yearly due to diarrhoea and other diseases caused by contaminated water and inappropriate waste water systems.

It is quite obvious that increasing consumption of water, insufficient water resources, lack of balance between supply and demand, depletion of water resources and absence of prompt, integrated water policies have all led to this critical situation. Discussions and debates are expected to lead to a comprehensive action plan and a decisive strategy for exchanging of scientific and technological know-how in sourcing, efficient management, preservation and sustainable use of water, in accordance with the existing and relevant provisions of international law and ministerial mandates.

Besides these objectives, this forum will also discuss ways for inventing and enhancing technological co-operation in integrated management of water resources between the member countries. “The coming two days will see members identifying and looking at ways of enhancing investment support to these countries for water-related projects, promoting regional, national and international networks including e-network”, Dr Saif al Shaqsi, Acting Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Regional Municipalities and Water Resources, told the Observer. “Also, more papers will be presented and round-table discussions will be held today and tomorrow” Dr Saif al Shaqsi explained.

Hosted by the Sultanate for the first time, the forum will also look into a variety of concerns including developing desalination plants, spearheading researches on sanitary drainage and other issues related to water management. The Group of 77 (G-77) was established in 1964 by 77 developing countries signatories of the “Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Countries” issued at the end of the first session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva.

High level delegates of the AWC (Arab Water Council), UNW-DPC (UN Water Decade Programme on Capacity Development), FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation), WAWSSC (Arab Water Studies and Water Security Centre), ECA (Economic Commission for Africa), IAHS (International Association of hydrological Sciences), WSTA (Water, Sciences & Technology Association), INWRDAM (Inter-Islamic Network on Water resources Development and Management) and ESCWA (Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia) and UNESCWA presented their papers which were later given for discussions.

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