On May 28th, 2017, the 16th World Water Congress commenced in Cancun, Mexico. At the invitation of President of International Water Resources Association, Mr. Lu Guihua, Vice Minister of Water Resources, attended its opening ceremony and delivered a keynote speech.
In his speech, Vice Minister Lu pointed out that China is challenged by special water conditions, imbalance between water supply and demand, and over-used carrying capacity of water environment. Water resources has become the major constraint to social and economic development. The Chinese government unveiled new water governance principles which can be summarized as “prioritizing water conservation, balancing spatial distribution, taking systematic approaches and giving full play to the roles of both government and market”. A series of pragmatic and effective policies and measures have been taken. Firstly, to establish a people-oriented and ecology-prioritized philosophy, and improve quality of water –related public services. Secondly, to implement the dual control action on total amount and intensity of water consumption in order to stimulate the transformation of economic structure and water use pattern. Thirdly, to carry out national water-saving action plan, and push forward the development of water-saving society. Fourthly, to give full play to the synergistic efforts of both government and market, and increase competence of water resources management. Fifthly, to adhere to the leading role of science and technology and law enforcement, and accelerate modernization of water management system and capacity building.
World Water Congress, organized by International Water Resources Association, serves as a platform for exchange of international experience and technologies on water management. More than 1,000 government officials, expert representatives and business leaders from all over the world participated in this Congress, and held discussions around the theme of “building a bridge between science and policy”.
During the Congress, Vice Minister Lu met Mr. Rafat, President of International Water Resources Association, and exchanged views on future cooperation between Ministry of Water Resources and International Water Resources Association in the aspects of technical exchanges, case studies and capacity building. President Rafat spoke highly of water strategies of the Chinese government and expressed his admiration for water management achievements in China. The China National Committee of International Water Resources Association held a special session during the Congress, and shared the policies and practices of China in the field of water resources management with nearly 100 experts from home and abroad.
After the Congress, Vice Minister Lu paid an official visit to Ecuador, and conducted in-depth exchanges with Mr. Jolongo, Ecuadorian State Secretary of Water Resources, on further enhancing sustainable water management and planning, water infrastructure construction, hydropower development, water technology and exchange of experience under the framework of MOU between the two ministries.