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Forum kicks-off process to assist in mobilising water and sanitation investments in Africa

The Development of the AIP Water Investment Scorecard, which will assist in mobilising water and sanitation investments in Africa through political commitment at the highest level in Africa, was formally initiated during a recent online event.

Jakaya Kikwete
Mr Jakaya Kikwete, former President of Tanzania, as well as Chair of Global Water Partnership Southern Africa

The event was hosted by President Jakaya Kikwete, Chair of Global Water Partnership Southern Africa and Africa Coordination and Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, CEO of the African Union Development Agency-NEPAD, and attended by leaders from the African Ministers’ Council on Water, World Bank, African Development Bank, Development Bank of Southern Africa, and the Global Centre on Adaptation who expressed intent to collaborate on the process.

Urgent need to accelerate water and sanitation investment in Africa

“In the face of the overwhelming challenge that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought to our continent, the need for urgent and significant investment in African water and sanitation resources has never been clearer,” said President Kikwete, the 4th President of the Republic of Tanzania.

He indicated that the African Development Bank (AfDB) estimates that $64 billion in water infrastructure investment is required annually to meet the 2025 Africa Water Vision of water security for all. Actual investments stand between $10 – $19 billion per year.

“Support at the highest leadership level is needed to accelerate water investments, combined with considerations for an economic analysis for water resources,” added President Kikwete.

The AIP Water Investment Scorecard will assist African governments to track progress and identify bottlenecks in attracting investments to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6 on water and sanitation.

This data-based narrative for water security is expected to improve the investment outlook for water and sanitation and increase domestic and regional financial resources allocated to the sector, develop local financial instruments and markets, and mobilise financing.

Embedded within the African Union Development Agency’s PIDA-PAP II

The AIP Water Investment Scorecard supports the implementation of the AIP (Continental Africa Water Investment Programme) which was adopted by the African Heads of State as part of the second phase of the African Union Development Agency’s 2021 – 2030 Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa Priority Action Plan (PIDA-PAP II).

Speaking during the online event, Dr Mayaki highlighted that as custodians of the PIDA-PAP II implementation, AUDA-NEPAD has instruments which will inform the indicators of the AIP Water Investment Scorecard. The instruments support quality preparation of projects; mitigate financial risks for projects; mobilise political support for projects; and share information on projects.

“The AIP Water Investment Scorecard is a very valuable tool to mobilise investments water through mutual accountability for results,” said Dr Mayaki.

A central repository for water investment knowledge

“Our visioning for the AIP Scorecard is to see this grow to become much more than just a way to track progress in water investments across the continent, but also a central repository for investor intelligence on water and sanitation infrastructure,” said Dr Paul Orengoh, Deputy Executive Secretary at the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW).

AIP partner network will address the obstacles to investments

Mr Chuene Ramphele, Group Executive, Infrastructure Delivery Division at the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), stressed the critical importance of supporting project preparation in the drive to accelerate water investments.

“This Scorecard will help us understand where the water investment gaps are and allow us to track performance regarding the transition of investments into implementations,” said Mr Ramphele.

Next steps on the AIP Water Investment Scorecard development

The kick-off event was the first step in the consultative process to develop the AIP Water Investment Scorecard. It was attended by close to 200 African water sector stakeholders, including African governments, Regional Economic Communities, and development agencies and facilitated by Global Water Partnership Southern Africa’s Executive Secretary and Head for Africa Coordination, Mr Alex Simalabwi.

The event included a technical discussion on potential data indicators led by UNICEF, World Health Organisation, the Food and Agriculture Organisation, International Water Management Institute, United Nations Environmental Programme, DBSA, International Union for Conservation of Nature, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, AUDA-NEPAD, United Nations Development Programme, and Stockholm Water Management Institute.

Its development was initiated following a high-level brainstorming meeting held on November 11, 2020 by President Jakaya Kikwete and Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, with leaders from AfDB, DBSA and COMESA. The meeting reached consensus on need for the AIP Water Investment Scorecard.

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