Caribbean Water Ministers to Discuss Water Financing

Posted: 2011-10-04

Government Ministers with responsibility for water in the Caribbean are scheduled to meet at the 7th Annual High Level Session (HLS) Ministerial Forum on October 6th and 7th, 2011 in Guadeloupe. The HLS is convened annually by the Global Water Partnership Caribbean in collaboration with the Caribbean Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA).

It is an unparalleled regional event, being the only meeting forum specifically for Caribbean Ministers responsible for water, and which provides a platform for discussion and dialogue around issues of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) including provision of water and sanitation services, water security and stakeholder participation.

At last year’s event in Grenada, Ministers, Permanent Secretaries and other senior officials reviewed the impact and response to the drought period which affected most Caribbean territories from late 2009 up to April 2010.  Ministers discussed and identified the need for Drought Management Policies and Procedures to be put in place to address future drought events.  To date, several utility companies have already instituted such policies and procedures.

The 7th HLS will focus on “Water Management Financing in the Caribbean: Pricing, Efficiency, Equity and Sustainability.” The need for greater funding priority for the water sector is a critical issue which has not always received as high a priority as warranted.  Moreover, there is an inherent link between an integrated approach to managing water; good water governance and financing but there has been very little discussion on this relationship.   Ministers will have the opportunity to share the experiences of their respective countries and will benefit from the input of regional and international financing agencies attending the HLS.  The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the European Union Water Initiative (EUWI) are among the agencies expected to attend.

HLS 7 will take place under the auspices of the President of the Syndicat Intercommunal d'Alimentation en Eau et d'Assainissement de la Guadeloupe (SIAEAG) with support from the Global Environment Facility-Integrating Watershed and Coastal Area Management (GEF-IWCAM) Project and the European Union Water Initiative Financial Working Group (EUWI-FWG). Representatives from the Caribbean Community Secretariat (CARICOM); the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB); the Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI); the Global Environment Facility (GEF); the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS); the Caribbean Water and Sewerage Association Inc. (CAWASA); and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) among other regional and international agencies are expected to participate.

For more information, contact:
Ms. Gabrielle Lee Look
Communications Officer
Global Water Partnership Caribbean
Tel: +868 622 3117; Fax: +868 622 1589

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