GWP boosts IWRM dialogue in Portuguese

Posted: 2008-12-01

The lack of information in Portuguese is a major constraint to promoting an integrated approach to water management. An important South– South initiative addressing this problem is the Lusophone Water Partnership (LWP), designed to promote IWRM among the almost 230 million people who are part of the Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) community. The LWP, launched in 2006 by GWP in cooperation with Cap-Net Brazil, advanced in 2008 with training and knowledge-sharing events. These included technical meetings at ANA (Brazil’s National Water Agency) and with the Okavango River Basin Permanent Commission (Angola), which brought together representatives from Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau and Mozambique. Involvement of academic institutions such as the University of Cape Verde’s Higher Institute of Education reflects an in-creased recognition of the LWP as a platform supporting sound management of water resources in Portuguese-speaking countries. ANA, a member of GWP Brazil, has been instrumental in developing strong technical links with some African Portuguese-speaking countries. Since 2001, Brazil’s Ministry of Science and Technology has had a fund (CTHidro) to develop IWRM actions, and has opened a special financial line (Pro-Africa), for projects involving universities and research centres in Lusophone African countries. GWP Brazil and Cap-Net Brazil helped to set up this fund. Examples of this initiative are the technical cooperation between Brazil and Mozambique to develop information systems and decision support models for regional development, and a workshop in Cape Verde to be held in November 2009, supported by GWP, Cap-Net and CTHidro, and involving the Luso-Brazilian Network of Environmental Studies. GWP believes South–South cooperation is critical to an integrated approach that takes into account historical, social, environmental and cultural contexts. Moreover, such initiatives can complement and strengthen the inter-regional work of African RWPs in which Portuguese is spoken.

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