Corporate News

IFC to facilitate 1st wastewater management in Gazipur under PPP

Aims to treat domestic sewage that will benefit nearly 230,000 households

2 DECEMBER 2020 – Gazipur City Corporation is set to receive a wastewater and sludge treatment system in two of its urban zones under the public private partnership model (PPP), aiming to treat domestic sewage that will benefit nearly 230,000 households.

With an estimated cost of $82 million, the pilot project will include a sewerage network of nearly 137 kilometers, two sewage treatment plants of about 56 million liters per day cumulative capacity, mechanical desludging of septic tanks, and transportation of fecal sludge to three treatment plants.

The move follows the signing of an agreement between IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the Public-Private Partnership Authority to provide transaction advisory services to help set up a wastewater management system in Gazipur and Tongi areas of GCC, said a press release.

The project was the result of a three-year effort by the Bangladesh Water Multi Stakeholder Partnership, facilitated by the 2030 Water Resources Group, a public-private-civil society multi-donor trust fund hosted by the World Bank Group.

Sultana Afroz, CEO of Bangladesh Public-Private Partnership Authority, said that the initiative was a big step towards meeting the government’s goal of improving environmental and wastewater treatment standards in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.

“The economic fallout from the impact of COVID-19 makes mobilizing funds and expertise from the private sector more important than ever,” said Wendy Werner, IFC country manager for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal.

Last year, IFC assisted the government to develop a water distribution network and supply facilities with a capacity to produce 340 million litres of potable water per day for the estimated 1.5 million residents of Purbachal.

Gazipur, which is a major hub for manufacturing of readymade garments, the country’s main export item, has seen rapid urbanization over the past two decades.

At present, the city of over two million people does not have a wastewater treatment plant or a centralized sewerage network.

Nearly 70 per cent of the 230,000 households in Gazipur and Tongi areas rely on a decentralized system, which is typically a conventional septic tank and pit latrines, while the wastewater generated by the remaining 30 per cent is discharged directly into open drains or water bodies.

IFC’s advice in public-private partnerships is helping national and municipal governments in developing countries partner with the private sector to offer tangible benefits to millions of people by improving access to education, energy, transport, healthcare, and sanitation.

IFC has advised on the structuring of nine PPPs in the water sector, including supply and treatment, and is currently working on three projects worldwide.

Participatory Rural Agricultural Advancement through Increased Incomes (PRAGATI) Project

The COVID-19 crisis has affected all walks of life, in particular the agriculture sector. Farmers have been the worst hit, with issues ranging from the collapse of logistics and labor interruptions leading to severe disruptions to the supply chain; post-harvest management problems; and cash crunches, among other challenges.

The pandemic poses an even greater risk in the context of Uttar Pradesh (UP) as regions like Bundelkhand are already considered to be one of India’s infamous hotspots for frequent droughts and other related miseries. Given the lockdown scenario, the threat of loss of livelihood and resulting economic insecurity has forced migrants in the State to return to their villages from urban centers. Unskilled and semi-skilled migrant laborers remain the most vulnerable to and economically impacted by the effects of the COVID-19 crisis. The Hon. Chief Minister of UP also flagged these issues particularly with regard to reverse migration and the urgent need to provide livelihoods to all migrants in the State.

In this context and supplementing the Government of UP’s proactive measures to address the most pressing challenge of providing livelihoods and economic security to the last mile, the 2030 Water Resources Group (2030 WRG) designed two initiatives in consultation with members of its UP Multi-Stakeholder Platform (MSP). These include:

  1. The Participatory Rural Agricultural Advancement through Increased Incomes (PRAGATI) Project was conceptualized by 2030 WRG and is focused on building resilient blocks across UP, one gram panchayat (GP) at a time. The project aims to provide livelihoods and achieve water, agricultural, and economic security for all farmers in the project area.
  2. 2030 WRG has also partnered with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), who in collaboration with the Government of UP has set up the UP COVID-19 Economic Recovery Alliance (UP CERA). The key objective of UP CERA is to create a platform for facilitating collaboration among key development partners on the COVID-19 response for livelihoods and economic recovery.

Both initiatives, apart from being geared toward facilitating economic recovery and resilience, are focused on leveraging all available government schemes and benefits for this purpose. The idea is to call for an integrated approach that builds on indigenous infrastructure and institutional capacity strengthening for expanding water and livelihood opportunities for all those who have been the hardest hit by the pandemic.

Acknowledging that concerted action is required to tackle the current economic and agricultural crises, the PRAGATI Project aims to build on existing initiatives, infrastructure, and affordable technology with the Government of UP in the lead and with the active participation of the private sector and civil society in the spirit of multi-stakeholder partnerships. As part of 2030 WRG’s UP MSP, Project PRAGATI integrates multi-stakeholder efforts from the Government of UP, including the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) cell, Department of Rural Development (DoRD) and other relevant departments, GIZ through its Water Security and Climate Adaptation in Rural India (WASCA) program, Dalmia Bharat Foundation through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) measures, Parmarth Samaj Sevi Sansthan, other civil society organizations (CSOs), and relevant private sector solutions.

The design of the PRAGATI Project is such that it looks at all components of integrated water resources management, therefore making it relevant and easily replicable in any district/GP in the region. As a result, in a very short period of time, the project has been replicated from the Bundelkhand region in the Gondlamau Development Block, Sitapur District and in the Babina Development Block, Jhansi.

A key component of the PRAGATI Project has been the integration of the local administration into the project design. The contours of the project in both the Gondlamau and the Babina Development Blocks are to achieve water, agricultural, and economic security for all farmers in the project area through a multi-stakeholder design as elaborated above. 2030 WRG is also in conversation with other corporates and foundations that see potential in the project design and are keen on replicating it in other districts.

PRAGATI Project objectives

The following priority areas have been identified under the PRAGATI Project:

  1. Leveraging and concentrating all government schemes and benefits;
  2. Adopting a multi-stakeholder design to include all relevant players;
  3. Micro-level water management based on due analysis conducted;
  4. Development of water budgets / water security plans at the GP level;
  5. GIS-based watershed mapping and analysis;
  6. Community-led participatory management of water resources at the GP level; and
  7. Fostering gender empowerment through women-led self-help groups (SHGs).

To complement this initiative further and as outlined above, 2030 WRG has also partnered with UNDP on the UP CERA initiative. Designed to drive economic recovery, this alliance furthers the development and dissemination of solutions for economic resilience through regular dialogue with the Government of UP. The alliance also strengthens the State’s response to the disruption of rural and urban livelihoods due to the COVID-19-induced lockdown.

As Co-Coordinator of UP CERA, 2030 WRG through its UP MSP regularly shares its learnings on collective action under the leadership of the Government of UP and in active partnership with the private sector and civil society to address water- and agriculture-related challenges in UP. This is also in line with 2030 WRG’s mandate from the Government of UP to support the State in addressing water-related issues through multi-stakeholder integration.

For updates from other UP CERA partners as well as cumulative data on their collective response to COVID-19, please refer to UP CERA Newsletter Volume 5 (September 2020).

Tanzania Multi-Sector Forum on Water Resources: Collaboration Key to Ensuring Water Security

Senior leaders from the Tanzanian water sector convened at the Julius Nyerere International Conference Centre in Dar es Salaam on 3rd December 2020 for the 4th National Multi-Sector Forum on Water Resources to explore strategies for strengthening collaboration among stakeholders in Tanzania’s water sector. The theme for this year’s event, which also accommodated virtual participation, was “accelerating realization of water security for all through enhanced multi-sectoral dialogues.”

The forum, which was hosted by the Ministry of Water in collaboration with the 2030 Water Resources Group, Global Affairs Canada, and Shahidi wa Maji, aimed to enhance cross-sectoral coordination as envisioned in the country’s Integrated Water Resources Management Development (IWRMD) Plans by breaking down institutional silos and catalyzing the exchange of knowledge, expertise, technologies and financial resources required to improve the country’s future water security.

“[T]he forum is a platform for candidly discussing different issues related to water resources management and development in this country and providing solutions or recommendations as well. In this way, we all collectively contribute to making decisions on this important resource as envisioned in the National Water Policy of 2002.” said the Permanent Secretary for Water, Eng. Anthony Sanga, during his opening address.

Tanzania is endowed with relatively abundant freshwater resources, but these are unevenly distributed and increasingly at risk. Water demand in the key economic sectors of agriculture, energy and manufacturing is rising sharply alongside rising requirements from population growth for supplying domestic consumption, improving the conditions of the poor and for the environment.

The need to work collaboratively is therefore more urgent than ever. Climate change is likely to have severe consequences for Tanzania through increased temperatures, changes in rainfall, increasingly frequent extreme weather events and rising sea levels.

The aim of the one-day event was to enhance collaboration, build synergies amongst actors and highlight collective action in water resources management. The overall objective was to bring together diverse actors in the water sector to discuss and deliberate on effective ways to achieve sustainable water resources management and enhance key sectors and other stakeholders’ participation for improved water security for all.

“Together in this unique group we have and still can accomplish so much as opposed to a situation where there would have been only one sector” said the Forum Chairperson, Eng. Mbogo Futakamba. “This has always been my motto, ‘if you want to reach far, move together – but if you want to move faster, move alone’”

Earlier this year, recognizing the value of collaboration to achieving the country’s water security goals, the Ministry of Water facilitated the enactment of legislation to roll out the multi-sectoral forum on water resources to the basin level, with some basins cascading the concept down to catchment level. The forum enabled a deeper understanding of how these initiatives are impacting other sectors and will allow for the sharing of best practices and innovation.

The event also focused on the contributions of the private sector towards water stewardship and strengthened water security. The private sector has tremendous capacity to incentivize stakeholders across other sectors by setting precedence, especially in terms of technological innovation. The forums provided a platform for private companies to highlight their contributions in the larger spectrum of addressing water security in Tanzania with the view to exchange knowledge and best practices within the context of building a strong private sector dialogue on water stewardship.

The forum also highlighted ongoing as well as potential contributions of the media towards supporting desired changes in society for achieving water security for all through educating the masses and raising awareness.

The forum, now officially in its fourth year, brings together senior leaders from government, business, research institutions, and civil society, to strengthen inter-sectoral collaboration, inform decision making at the national and basin levels, and help shape an improved institutional framework for decision making.

Setting the path for 2030 WRG scale-up


The 2030 WRG Governing Council met virtually at the end of November 2020. The meeting was an important milestone in setting the path for 2030 WRG scale-up. Building on the guidance to 2030 WRG from the Steering Board over the past year, the Council centered on the strategic directions of 2030 WRG in more fully engaging partners, leveraging the World Bank Group, and elevating and raising the visibility of 2030 WRG to be the vehicle of choice in collective action on improving water management across sectors.

GC members expressed support for 2030 WRG to expand to new countries and states while innovating on models to generate financial sustainability at different levels. Building on the GC meeting of September 2019, the GC supported the development of the City-based MSP model as part of deepening engagement in countries. The GC also supported the development of “program accelerators” in countries with more mature MSPs as a key strategic pillar of the scale-up strategy of 2030 WRG. Global private sector partners expressed interest and offered their support to engage with the 2030 WRG Secretariat in shaping, conceptualizing, and actively being part of the accelerator programs.

2030 WRG will also increase links with the climate and nature agendas to further explore circular economy and nature-based solutions as part of a larger effort to look at water security and resilience planning and adding more shades of blue to sustainable financing.

South Africa Water Stewardship Event Emphasizes Good Governance And Sustainable Investments For Green Recovery

The 6th Annual Water Stewardship Event convened online today and provided examples of how strengthening water sector governance and stewardship practices can provide a pathway for a green and inclusive recovery from the impacts of COVID-19. The pandemic has caused the country’s real Gross Domestic Product to contract by 17 percent in the second quarter of 2020 compared to the same time last year and exacerbated pre-existing vulnerabilities in the water sector. Over 200 water sector representatives including officials from government, industry, finance, civil society and development organisations were in attendance for the virtual event jointly hosted by the National Business Initiative (NBI), the Strategic Water Partners Network (SWPN), the Royal Danish Embassy and supported by GIZ’s Natural Resources Stewardship Programme (NatuReS).

According to the World Health Organisation, washing hands with soap and water is the single most effective measure against the spread of COVID-19, putting equitable access to water and sanitation at the center of the pandemic response. The National Water and Sanitation Master Plan indicates that only 65 percent of South Africans have access to safe and reliable water services while  14.1 million people lack access to decent sanitation. Moreover, the South African water sector struggles with financial challenges and capacity restrictions, constraining its ability to bridge the service delivery gap, a situation exacerbated by the impacts of the pandemic. These challenges are aggravated by a lack of accountability linked to the governance, management, and oversight of the sector itself. With water as a key enabler of economic growth, there is an opportunity to leverage green and sustainable investments in the sector to support South Africa’s efforts to build back better.

In the opening session, Trevor Balzer, Acting Director General of the Department of Water and Sanitation, appealed to the water sector to “embrace the power of partnerships between private, public and civil society to work together to close the water gap through taking a water stewardship approach.” Mr. Balzer urged local and international investors to “come and invest in our water infrastructure which remains one of the most meaningful ways to create jobs, enable economic growth, reduce inequalities and support small, medium, and micro-enterprises.”

In a series of keynote speeches, panel discussions, and interactive Q&A divided over two thematic sessions, participants explored what needs to be done to strengthen water sector governance and encourage the much-needed water investments required to support a post-COVID-19 green recovery.

Morning Session: Robust Governance for Sustainable Recovery

The overarching message of the morning session was that strengthening water sector governance is a prerequisite to improve performance and bring about a much-needed recovery in the sector.

“Strong systems and institutions are needed to drive effective water resources management and expanding access to water and sanitation services” says Martin Ginster, Co-Chair of the SWPN. “As we look towards the future, good water governance will be needed to ensure an adequate supply of water at an acceptable quality to prevent and fight future pandemics.”

For the public sector, this involves improving financial management and technical capacity at both national and municipal levels. Strengthening good governance requires a clear understanding of powers and functions, mandated responsibility and the inter-dependency between resource protection, usage, planning and development across all spheres of government. This understanding must be met with clear institutional arrangements that can further advance good sector governance.

In the private sector, while there is a strong focus on corporate accountability in terms of sustainability, there is a need to strengthen corporate leadership on water security specifically.

Throughout the morning, speakers emphasized the importance of greater participation and diversity of voices in decision-making as a means of strengthening transparency and accountability. Community-led good governance practice, whereby communities are equipped and informed on how to both engage with government and private sector stakeholders, as well as hold them to account for specific actions linked to water conservation and demand management, offers a proven avenue for strengthening accountability and transparency in decision-making. Examples of such action include participatory planning and budgeting processes, deepening understanding of procurement systems and participating in planning of projects that require a balanced understanding of economic development opportunity and natural resource protection measures.

Afternoon Session: Water Investments for a Post-COVID-19 Green Recovery

The focus of the afternoon session explored the opportunities afforded by green financing. The COVID-19 pandemic has served as a wake-up call over the reality of environmental risks with human-related causes. As governments all over the world, including South Africa, make significant investments into emergency support programs, there is a need to ensure recovery packages honor the balance between jump-starting economic growth and restoring jobs as well as protecting natural capital.

The session was opened by HE Mr. Tobias Elling Rehfeld, the Danish Ambassador to South Africa. In his address, he urged the sector to rapidly scale-up investments in order to achieve the country’s water and sanitation delivery goals. Such investments can also be an important lever of economic recovery. “Water infrastructure investments in particular are crucial to stimulate growth and job creation” he said, pointing to the sector’s funding deficit of approximately R300 billion over the next ten years. “South Africa needs all hands-on deck, and Denmark is ready to step up our support in terms of partnership programmes, water sector technology and finance.”

Opportunities for sustainable investing in the water sector include reducing water losses, repairing and maintaining water infrastructure and enabling nature-based solutions to achieve water security and improved water resource management.

“Investments in water should be used to build greater resilience and more effective management of water-related risks. At the same time, we need to reinforce water governance to ensure the reliable delivery of water for priority uses” says Alex McNamara, Water and Climate Manager with NBI, who provided an overview of key takeaways in the closing session. “COVID-19 has reinforced the importance of access to safe and reliable water, and we have a responsibility to learn from our experience over the last year to build back greener, stronger, and better.”

23 November 2020 Session: Achieving Duality of Water Savings and Food Security by Transforming Value Chains

Webinar on Digital Technology Applications for Agricultural Water Productivity Improvements

PRESS RELEASE Global Coalition unites to tackle the urban water crisis and address climate change through public-private collaboration  

FOR RELEASE: 10/27/2020 7 AM EST 

Companies, policymakers, cities and citizens will develop and scale innovations that reinvent water consumption in the home and drive system-level transformation 

GENEVA, Oct. 27, 2020 — Launched today, the 50L Home Coalition (Coalition) is a global action-oriented platform addressing two of the world’s most pressing challenges: water security and climate change. This global collaboration aims to re-invent the future of water and change the narrative on domestic water consumption by making a water-efficient lifestyle – 50 Liters (L) of daily water use per person – an irresistible aspiration for all.  

The world is in the midst of an urban water crisis, and the pressures on our limited resources are only acceleratingSeventy percent of the world’s 20 megacities are already experiencing water scarcity or drought conditions, disrupting business, threatening health and exacerbating inequalities. The average home in the developed world is highly inefficient, and average per capita household water use is as high as 500L per day. Because an estimated 16% of total energy use in the home is related to water, this disproportionate domestic water consumption is also contributing to climate change.  

The Coalition will advance policies, technologies and cross-industry collaboration to drive responsible water consumption in residential households and commercial buildings as a strategic lever to transform urban water management. Convened by the 2030 Water Resources Group (2030 WRG), World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and World Economic Forumthe Coalition is led by a pioneering leadership group of private sector, public sector and civil society representatives, including Arcadis, Electrolux, Engie, Kohler, Procter & Gamble and Suez. Under the direction of the Board, Braulio Eduardo Morera will lead the 50L Home Coalition as director, starting December 15. 

The Coalition will collaborate across four key pillars to accelerate progress towards United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 6 (clean water and sanitation), 12 (responsible consumption and production) and 13 (climate action) 

  • InnovationDeveloping solutions to address water efficiency in homes and within the wider urban water system. 
  • Education: Reshaping peoples relationship with water, helping to inspire daily behavioral lifestyle changes 
  • Implementation: Launching pilot projects in water-stressed cities that mobilize local stakeholders and financing.  
  • Policy and regulation: Advancing policy, regulatory and industry frameworks to transform household water use. 

In facilitating collaboration across these four pillars, the Coalition aims to make responsible household water consumption a key aspect of cities climate, water security and resiliency strategies.  

 “Our brands reach five billion people around the world, and with this scale comes a responsibility to continue innovating our products to help save energy, water and natural resources,” said Shailesh G. Jejurikar, Chief Executive Officer, Fabric and Home Care, Procter & Gamble and Co-Chair of the Coalition. “We need unprecedented collaboration between businesses, government and civil society to make 50 liters of daily water use per person a reality.”  

Through the 50L Home Coalition, we will leverage our global presence, our water chemistry expertise and our innovation in water and energy-efficient products to accelerate positive change,” said Virginie Helias, Chief Sustainability Officer, Procter & Gamble. We need to partner with the entire water value chain through public and private collaboration, and we need cities and citizens to engage. Together, we can bring to life this ambitious and inspiring vision, re-imagining how people live in their homes so that we can collectively protect our common Home.”  

“The 50L Home Coalition is a terrific way to engage and educate consumers to be better water stewards in their home and for the planet,” said David Kohler, President and CEO of Kohler Co. “This opportunity pushes us even further to innovate and deliver the next generation of water-efficient products and solutions that offer transformative value to our customers and partners. We’re excited to contribute and be in the company of several other forward-thinking organizations poised to create positive change.” 

“There is still time to stop our cities from running out of water, but we must act together to do so,” said Peter Oosterveer, Global Chief Executive, Arcadis. “If we can reduce each person’s water use to around 50 liters per day, we can help preserve this resource for future generations and make a positive contribution to the fight against climate change. This is why Arcadis has joined the 50L Coalition and why we’re taking action to help ensure everyone has access to clean water.”  

“Water issues moved from being difficult to solve to being complex. Water, health, food, climate, energy, agriculture issues are all interconnected, and cannot be addressed in silo,” said Annelise Avril, SUEZ Senior VP Innovation, Digital Transformation & Research. “No single stakeholder has the whole answer. SUEZ joins the 50L Home Coalition because we are convinced we need to join forces, combine our skills and expertise to come up with adequate solutions.”  

“2030 WRG brings a multi-stakeholder model of collaboration that drives change through collective action on the ground,” said Karin Krchnak, 2030 WRG Program Manager. “We are excited to join the 50L Home Coalition to transform how water is used and valued by all, particularly at the urban level, as cities face increasing risks of water insecurity, shared by governments, the private sector and civil society.” 

“The pandemic of 2020 has brought to light the importance of water as a front-line public health defence. In the home, we need water to cook, clean, hydrate and for hygiene,” said Peter Bakker, President and CEO, World Business Council for Sustainable Development. “Business is already providing solutions that reduce and remove the need for water used in the home. But we can do so much more. Through the 50L Home Coalition, we want to accelerate and scale the deployment of practical solutions for sustainability that reach the household and trigger systemic change.” 

“As cities worldwide face increasing pressure to meet the needs for competing water resource demands, re-inventing our urban water systems to be more resilient and resource-efficient becomes critically important,” said Dominic Waughray, Managing Director, World Economic Forum. “Achieving systemic change can best be achieved through multi-stakeholder coalitions and fostering cooperation and innovation across a diverse group of leaders – the 50L Home Coalition is an exciting global action platform that will turn this vision into reality.”  

The 50L Home Coalition offers an opportunity to accelerate innovations to enable communities’ appropriate and responsible use of water resources,” said Braulio Eduardo Morera, Director, 50L Home Coalition. “I am excited about the prospect of leveraging the capabilities of the private sector, public sector and civil society. Together we will build strong collaborations with policymakers, national and local leaders and innovators to help cities adapt to climate change and avoid acute water crises.” 

Reinventing water consumption in the home is not something one company or organization can do alone. The Coalition invites visionary leaders from companies, cities or civil society that are committed to solving the urban water crisis and addressing climate change to join the Coalition. To learn more about the Coalition’s projects, members or upcoming events, visit 



Rachel Stand 

Hill + Knowlton Strategies  

(516) 761– 5892 

Webinar series | Strengthening Water Governance in Peru

Continuing the collaboration with the Ministry of Environment under the framework of the “Dialogue on Water Governance with the OECD” process, 2030 WRG and the World Bank Water Global Practice are supporting the organization of a series of virtual sessions focused on strengthening local capacities around water security, governance, economic instruments for water risk management, and regulatory framework.

Participants are public officers from the institutions that are part of the Multisectoral Commission set by the Peruvian Government to lead the process: the Presidency of Council of Ministries; Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation; National Water Authority (ANA); Ministry of Health; Ministry of Housing, Construction and Sanitation; Ministry of Energy and Mining; Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Ministry of Environment; Technical Agency for the Administration of Sanitation Services (OTASS); Water Supply and Sanitation Regulator (SUNASS); and Ministry of Production.

This webinar series is part of the activities being undertaken in preparation for the Policy Seminar with the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). This in turn is part of the ongoing “Dialogue on Water Governance” process that is jointly implemented between the Government of Peru and the OECD, and has started in January 2019. A preliminary version of the OECD’s assessment and recommendations on water governance in the country will be shared and discussed during this seminar.

Webinar | Strategic Partnerships for a Common Water Agenda in the Americas: Experience from Brazil

September 25, 2020 – Organized by the Organization of American States, this webinar gathered water specialists from diverse organizations in Brazil to mitigate potential climate change impacts on water resources and address water-related risks. The virtual meeting aimed at sharing experiences, lessons learned, and good practices from Brazil to better respond to recurring water crises across the Americas using a collaborative approach. Brazil shared its experience in facing droughts while 2030 WRG – drawing from the case of the partnership’s own program and current initiatives in São Paulo – shared its global experience in establishing multi-stakeholder platforms to advance the implementation of coordinated actions for water security.

Participants included representatives and national experts from sectors that are repeatedly affected by droughts and floods in Brazil and elsewhere in the Americas, members of the hydrometeorological community, and decision-makers.