WASHINGTON, May 23, 2014 – Africa’s international waters are a lifeline for its people, important for economic growth, growing food, providing electricity to power homes and businesses, creating jobs and providing critical environmental services. Over 500 million people, or 65 percent of Africa’s total population, are living in 63 transboundary river basins across the continent. The unique challenges and opportunities related to management and development of international waters warrant a holistic approach to their development – one that cuts across national borders and sectors – and calls for a shift from the conventional perspective of dividing waters, to cooperative action on growing the pie and subsequent sharing of benefits.
With the world water community set to converge in Dakar in late May, expectations are high that the Fifth Africa Water Week will be a landmark event for catalyzing new actions to advance the water agenda in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Convened by the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) in conjunction with the African Union Commission (AUC), Africa Water Week represents political commitment at the highest levels with over 1,000 participants collectively seeking to create solutions to Africa’s water resources and sanitation challenges.