MENA stakeholder conference announces new initiative to support regional capacity building efforts
Participants of the “Water, Growth and Stability: Transboundary Water Cooperation for Sustainable Growth and Stability in Middle East and North Africa (MENA)" conference (April 26-28) endorsed the launch of a new initiative to advance water management at national and local levels in order to stimulate sustainable development and cross-border cooperation. The occasion marks an important step towards building an integrated approach to water security and stability.
The WGS Conference, organised by the REC in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary and with the support of the Government of Sweden, gathered together a broad spectrum of key stakeholders from throughout the MENA region, including representatives of ministries in charge of water management and water security, local authorities, international organisations, NGOs, academia and the business community.
As highlighted in the conference outcome document, sustainable water management contributes to and secures sustainable development, leading in turn to growth and stability. The transfer of knowledge, education and awareness-raising among stakeholders, citizens, producers and consumers are among the key factors.
During the closing session of the conference, participants strengthened their endorsement of the WGS initiative by: creating a knowledge-based platform; connecting a dynamic network of water experts from the MENA region and Europe; and introduced an e-learning tool for capacity building and the dissemination of lessons learned.
The three-day conference closed on April 28 with study tours nearby water wells and the Budapest Water Works wastewater treatment plant.
Mr. Zsolt Bauer, Head of Communications and PR
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About the REC:
The Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (REC) is an independent international organisation, which was established in 1990 by Hungary, the United States and the European Commission. Today, this non-advocacy, not-for-profit organisation is legally based on a charter signed by the governments of 32 countries and the European Commission. The REC works in various fields of sustainable development, building bridges between solutions and stakeholders on topic areas such as biodiversity; climate change and clean energy; educational tools; environmental financing; environmental management; green transport; health and environment; law development, enforcement and compliance; local governance; participatory governance; sustainable development academy; and water management. www.rec.org
The regional project Sustainable Use of Transboundary Water Resources and Water Security Management (WATER SUM) promotes the more sustainable use of water resources in the MENA region. Donor: Government of Sweden. http://watersum.rec.org/