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Annual Ministerial High Level Forum

The High Level Forum (HLF) is an unmatched regional event, being the only meeting of Caribbean Water Ministers to date. The HLF affords Ministers and senior officials involved in water resources management a unique opportunity to share experiences and ideas for addressing water issues affecting the region and individual countries.

The Ministerial Forum is a joint initiative of the Caribbean Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA) and its partner, the Global Water Partnership-Caribbean (GWP-C) which began in 2005 as a session within the CWWA’s Annual Conference and Exhibition.

Both CWWA and GWP-C saw the HLF as a proactive approach to addressing the water resources management problems in the Caribbean in relation to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Moreover, it is a means of bringing Ministers and policy-makers together to engage in discussions on critical issues on Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) and to provide the necessary technical information to support decision-making and the development and implementation of regional approaches/policies for water sector management.

High Level Forum Overview (2005 - 2014)

HLF 1 (Barbados) - IWRM and Effective Water Governance

HLF 2 (Tobago) - Challenges and Opportunities in IWRM in the Caribbean

HLF 3 (St. Kitts) - IWRM Planning and Policies in the Caribbean

HLF 4 (Jamaica) - Water Financing

HLF 5 (St. Thomas, USVI) - Building a Water Secure Region: A Caribbean Response

HLF 6 (Grenada) - Water Crisis in the Caribbean: The IWRM Response

HLF 7 (Guadeloupe) - Water Management Financing in the Caribbean: Pricing, Efficiency, Equity and Sustainability

HLF 8 (The Bahamas) - The Water and Energy Nexus in Caribbean Development


HLF 9 (Barbados) - Water and Sanitation and the Post-2015 Development Agenda: Addressing Wastewater Policy and Financial Challenges in the Caribbean


HLF 10 (The Bahamas) - Caribbean Water Security: Risks and Opportunities


HLF 11 (Miami, Florida, USA) - Connecting Water to Climate, Economic Growth and Development within the Post-2015 Development Agenda

Key outcomes from past High Level Forums

  • At HLF 5, three Caribbean Ministers with responsibility for water from Guyana, Nevis and Grenada, endorsed a proposal to include water resources management as a key sector to be addressed at the highest political level in the Caribbean region.
  • HLF 6 helped to encourage some Caribbean countries to work toward developing Drought Management Plans to be incorporated into their overall Water Resources Management planning.
  • At HLF 7, five Caribbean Ministers of Water from Nevis, Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Kitts, endorsed key recommendations for better water management in the region. A Decision Paper with these recommendations was signed by the five Ministers.
  • At HLF 8, nine Caribbean Ministers with responsibility for water resources management including 2 Deputy Prime Ministers, committed themselves to addressing regional water security and building climate resilience in the Caribbean. The Ministers present at the Forum from The Bahamas, Anguilla, Barbados, Belize, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Nevis, St. Kitts, Jamaica and St. Vincent and the Grenadines signed a declaration which recognises that high level political leadership is key for meeting water security and climate change challenges faced by Caribbean countries.
  • At HLF 9, five (5) Caribbean Ministers with responsibility for water resources management from Barbados, Anguilla, The Commonwealth of Dominica, Nevis and the Turks and Caicos Islands, and five (5) senior ministerial/ government representatives from Saint Kitts, Grenada, Antigua and Barbuda, Guadeloupe and Belize have endorsed recommendations for placing greater value on wastewater in the region and its role in the holistic management of water in Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
  • At HLF 10, eight (8) Caribbean Ministers and senior government officials with responsibility for water resources management, endorsed recommendations related to the need for greater regional synergy in the water sector.

The 11th High Level Forum:

Connecting Water to Climate, Economic Growth and Development within the Post-2015 Development Agenda

The 11th High Level Forum (HLF) takes place on August 27th and 28th, 2015 in Miami, Florida and is being organised by the Caribbean Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA) and the Global Water Partnership-Caribbean (GWP-C) in collaboration with the Global Environment Facility – funded Caribbean Regional Fund for Wastewater Management (GEF CReW) Project. The Forum takes place under the theme “Connecting Water to Climate, Economic Growth and Development within the Post-2015 Development Agenda” and forms part of the CWWA’s 24th Annual Conference and Exhibition which is being held in partnership with the Florida Section of the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

On September 25th – 27th, 2015 the United Nations will hold a Summit to Adopt the Post-2015 Development Agenda known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs follow and expand on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which expire at the end of the year and will be “the global community’s plan of action” for all dimensions of sustainable development (economic, social and environmental) for the next fifteen (15) years.

On the heels of establishing this new universal Agenda; Caribbean Ministers with responsibility for water resources management, will have the opportunity at the 11th High Level Forum (HLF) to share and discuss critical regional water and climate issues. Both water and climate change are reflected as priorities in the soon to be   confirmed SDGs, with Goal 6 being “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all” and Goal 13 being “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.”

The 11th HLF takes place at an appropriate time to allow for discussion and collaboration on water and climate matters to help shape the sustainable development agenda of the region. This year’s Forum is forward-looking with a goal of producing concrete outcomes and harmonised recommendations to guide national and regional efforts in operationalising water, wastewater and climate goals and targets for sustainable development.

Posted: 2012-09-14

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