Finance , Thematic Process
[HLP 10] World Water Council, CAF – Development Bank of Latin America, World Bank
Since the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were established, concerted efforts have been
made to improve access to basic sanitation, yet one third of the world's population still lack it.
Now that the MDGs have been superseded by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the
definition of safe and adequate sanitation is being tightened and the figures will look even worse.
Although the economic and health benefits of access to basic sanitation have been extensively
acknowledged, the issue is often low on politicians’ priorities, mostly because of financial issues.
Indeed, the costs for implementing sanitation projects and the maintenance of deteriorating
infrastructure are too high and the investments needed are unsustainable.
An important aspect of sanitation systems is the treatment and disposal or reuse of human excreta
and wastewater. In fact, wastewater treatment is a global concern (particularly in developing
countries), considering that over 80 percent of the world’s wastewater –and over 95 percent in
some least developed countries– is released to the environment without treatment. For this
reason, in the context of sanitation systems, wastewater treatment has been placed at the center
of water discussions and action plans towards the compliance of the SDGs.
While the traditional financial instruments in place to improve sanitation have proven to be
inadequate in many cases, the sanitation sector has demonstrated to have a potential for
mobilizing financing through innovative and adapted technologies, in particular toward a circular
economy and the reuse of treated wastewater. In this context, wastewater treatment can become
the engine for the circular economy. This relatively new concept embraced by the main
international organizations refers to reduce waste systematically throughout the life cycles and
uses of products and their components.
Purpose and scope
The World Water Council started a work program aiming at identifying and publicising innovative
financial mechanisms to accelerate sanitation services around the world. The program was
established to advise decision makers and politicians on the actions they can take to enable
High-Level Panel on Increasing Financial Flows
for Sanitation and Wastewater Management
progress in the sanitation sector and how to overcome the global challenges of financing the
investments needed for ensuring basic access to safe and adequate sanitation, and
consequently, sustainable economic growth and contribution to the wider set of SDGs.
At the same time, CAF and the World Bank have been working on financing and investment
promotion of wastewater treatment based on case studies and the required enabling environment
to outline policies for decision making.
The proposed High-Level Panel aims at influencing decision makers and public policies through
promoting innovative finance strategies and deepening key requisites of regulatory, institutional
and corporate governance to improve the sanitation sector, with particular attention to the impact
of wastewater treatment as a cornerstone to comply with SDG 6 and water-related SDGs.
The High-Level Panel will provide an opportunity to gather key stakeholders coming from
governments - in particular Ministers and Local Authorities - to engage in a debate about
innovative financial mechanisms applied to the sanitation sector in general and to wastewater
management, in particular.
The purpose of the session is to facilitate a political dialogue about sanitation and wastewater
management related investments by:
- Raising the profile of the issue on the international political agenda and within the
- Identifying the inter sectoral regulatory, legal, and policy barriers for innovative financing
and sustainable services.
- Promoting impactful and practical ways of financing sanitation and wastewater-related
- Raising the importance of moving from a linear to a circular economy in which wastewater
is seen as a valuable resource rather than a burden.
- Promoting the need to move from traditional finance to innovative financing and business
models that better consider the long-term operation and management of the assets and
take advantage of the potential for resource recovery.
Program schedule (90’)
Timing Item Speakers
(5’) Opening Remarks
- Mr. Loïc Fauchon, Honorary President, World
- Mr. Jose Carrera, Corporate Vice President, CAF
- Mr. Guang Zhe Chen, Senior Director, Water
Global Practice, World Bank
Introduction to a report
prepared by the WWC
and introduction to the
Mr. Jon Lane, World Water Council’s report author
Panel discussion and
interaction with the
Moderator: Mr. Jon Lane, World Water Council’s
- H.E. Mr. Andries Nel, Deputy Minister of
Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs
(CoGTA), South Africa
- H.E. Mr. Carlos Bruce, Minister of Housing,
Construction and Sanitation, Peru
- H.E. Mr. Dyogo de Oliveira, Minister of Planning,
Development and Management, Brazil
- H.E. Mr. Isaac Ochieng, Ambassador of Kenya in
Brazil, on behalf of the Minister of Water and
- Dr. Liu Xiaoyong Development Research Center
of the Ministry of Water Resources, People’s
Republic of China
- Mr. Firmino da Silveira Soares Filho, Mayor of
Concluding Remarks Hachmi Kennou, Governor of the World Water
Council and Chair of the WWC “Cities” Task Force