World Economic Forum Water Initiative

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The World Economic Forum Water Initiative began in 2003.[1] The purpose of the initiative, which was originally instigated and supported by Alcan and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, has been to create “multistakerholder networks” in South Africa and India.[2] By the forums own admission the objective of the water initiative has been to “catalyze ideas for public-private water infrastructure projects and shape them into well-developed, bankable project propositions, complete with champions and financing plans.” [3] The Water Initiative is a forum where political and corporate elites can meet to discuss, plan and initiate increased private sector involvement in the water and waste water industry.

A report released following the Forum’s 2008 proceedings addresses the exclusive and private nature of the Forum’s Water Initiative, noting, “Participation in this project is limited to Industry and Strategic Partners of the World Economic Forum…”[4] Indeed, the main players of the initiative are those dominating the global water industry. The initiative is managed by the World Economic Forum and facilitated by a project board that includes The Coca-Cola Company, Nestle, the Global Water Partnership (GWP) and the International Water Management Institute. Other major players involved in the project include Alcan Inc., USAID India, UNDP India, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and NEPAD Business Foundation. The Water Initiative works closely with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development water project.[5]

At the World Economic Forum Summit in India (2005) the Indian Business Alliance on Water (IBAW) was formalised. This alliance consists of government officials, representatives from USAID and UNDP as well as executives from a range of companies, foundations and NGOs. Regional Activities of the Water Initiative, accessed 28 November 2008.</ref>

Two reports were published following the 2008 World Economic Forum in Davos: “Realising the Potential of Public-Private Partnership Projects in Water” and “Managing our Future Water Needs for Agriculture, Industry, Human Health and the Environment.”[6]

References

  1. World Economic Forum, Realizing the Potential of Public-Private Partnership Projects in Water, accessed 28 November 2008.
  2. World Economic Forum, Regional Activities of the Water Initiative, accessed 28 November 2008.
  3. World Economic Forum, Regional Activities of the Water Initiative, accessed 28 November 2008.
  4. World Economic Forum, Sustainable Business: Water for Agriculture, accessed 27 November 2008
  5. World EConomic Forum,Regional Activities of the Water Initiative, accessed 28 November 2008.
  6. World Economic Forum, Two reports published in Davos, accessed 28 November 2008.
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