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World Water Council hopes to strengthen cooperation with China: forum organizer

03-13-2012 08:55 BJT

MARSEILLE, France, March 12 (Xinhua) -- The World Water Council (WWC) hopes to strengthen cooperation with China in addressing the global water crisis, vice-president of the Marseille-based organization said Monday in an interview with Xinhua.

China's Ministry of Water Resources have a very active participation in the council, said Benedito Braga, who is now serving as the president of the Sixth World Water Forum, a six-day event kicking off Monday in the southern French city of Marseille.

"We have visited China many times. We have excellent relations with Minister Chen Lei. He is a great supporter of the works of our council, " he told Xinhua on the sidelines of the forum, the world's largest meeting on water issues.

"We hope that we can, in the near future, strengthen this cooperation by starting some project with the Ministry of Water Resources of China, which is a very important member of our council," said Braga.

The forum, organized by the WWC in close collaboration with the authorities of the hosting country, has been held every three years since 1997 to raise the importance of water on the political agenda and promote the solution of international water issues.

This year's forum, under the theme of "Time for Solutions," was expected to draw around 25,000 experts, policymakers and activists to round tables, seminars and debates on the worsening problems of freshwater.

China joined the WWC in 2009 and this week's forum is the first global platform on water issues that China is participating as a full member.

Braga spoke highly of China's work in water resources management and utilization.

"China is already doing a very good job," said Braga, who is also a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Sao Paulo (USP) in Brazil.

"I see in the Chinese government a very serious attitude towards improving water security in the country through the provision of large infrastructures to cope with droughts and floods," he said.

Referring the theme of the forum, he said, "Major solutions have to come in the area of financing and governance."

Funds provided to the less developed world must be used in the correct way to improve water supply and sanitation, he stressed.

"How to finance solutions in innovative areas and how to make sure that these funds are correctly used through a governance process that is transparent and accountable is extremely important," he said.

Editor:Wang Lingfei |Source: Xinhua

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