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14.05.2012 - 18.05.2012 | Cairo

The Fourth Africa Water Week, which aims at achieving the Millennium Development Goals water and sanitation targets by 2015, comes to Egypt.

The Africa Water Week (aww) is organized by the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) and represents a political commitment at the highest level with over 1000 participants from governments, regional institutions, international partners, the private sector, the scientific community, civil society, and the media from all over the world, and in particular Africa, meeting to discuss and collectively seek solutions to Africa’s water and sanitation challenges. It is held annually in keeping with the decision of the AMCOW to institutionalize AWW in order to build momentum on achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) water and sanitation targets by 2015, and the 2025 Africa Water Vision. This is in line with AMCOW’s belief that adequate and equitable access to water and sanitation makes a critical contribution to Africa’s progress towards sustainable growth and development.

The 1st Africa Water Week (aww-1) was held in Tunis, Tunisia in 2008 with theme “Accelerating Water Security for the Socio-Economic Development of Africa; the 2nd Africa Water Week (aww-2)with the theme “Carrying Forward the Commitments of the Sharm el Sheikh AU Summit on Water and Sanitation: a Sprint to Finish” was held in Midrand, Johannesburg, South Africa in 2009, while Ethiopia hosted the 3rd Africa Water Week (aww-3)in Addis Ababa in 2010 with the theme: “Implementing the Africa Water Vision and meeting the MDG target: Challenges and Opportunities in Water and Sanitation.”

The 4th Africa Water Week (aww-4) hosted by Egypt from the 14th – 18th May 2012, comes at a time that greater attention is being focused on the nexus between water and growth and development, hence the decision to call back attention on how far the continent has exploited water resources to grow Africa’s economies given the sectoral linkages with agriculture, energy, transport, environment and health. 2012 also being the year that AMCOW marks its 10th year anniversary, the theme of aww-4 “Water for Growth in Africa, AMCOW’s Journey @10” becomes a time for stock taking for the continental organization with the AU mandate to provide political leadership, policy direction and advocacy in the provision, use and management of water resources for sustainable socio-economic development and maintenance of ecosystems in Africa.

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