UN-Water, WHO Call for Investments in National WASH Systems
UN Photo/Martine Perret
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The bi-annual Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water (GLAAS) report surveys 115 countries and territories, representing a total of 4.5 billion people.

The report enables analysis of countries’ achievements towards the WASH targets in the SDGs.

It finds that WASH sectors often lack the funds and staffing to fully implement their plans.

28 August 2019: UN-Water and the World Health Organization (WHO) launched their bi-annual Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water (GLAAS) report, which surveys 115 countries and territories, representing a total of 4.5 billion people. The report finds that water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sectors often lack the funds and staffing to fully implement their plans, with fewer than 14% of countries stating that they already have the resources they need, and others reporting funding gaps of up to 60%.

The 121-page report, titled ‘National Systems to Support Drinking-Water Sanitation and Hygiene – Global Status Report 2019,’ focuses on governance, monitoring, human resources and finances for WASH, and especially on national policies, plans and targets. The report finds that most countries have WASH policies and implementation plans, but also lack the resources to fully carry out those plans. It shows that built infrastructure is only part of the equation for WASH, and that institutional, governance and financial management systems are also greatly needed.

Built infrastructure is only part of the equation for WASH; institutional, governance and financial management systems are also greatly needed.

The GLAAS report enables analysis of countries’ achievements towards the WASH targets in the SDGs (target 6.1 on drinking water and target 6.2 on hygiene), as well as on stakeholder participation in WASH (target 6.b). Key statistics from the 2019 report are highlighted in a series of infographics, available separately from the report. The report is also accompanied by a set of case studies on policy and planning frameworks for sanitation in seven countries: Bangladesh, Kenya, Mali, Nepal, Senegal, Uganda and Zambia. The African country studies are being used to develop Africa Sanitation Policy Guidelines, led by the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW).

At World Water Week, held from 25-30 August in Stockholm, Sweden, WHO and UN-Water called for urgently increasing investment in WASH systems. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, highlighted the benefits of water and sanitation systems, not only for health, but also for building “stable, secure, and prosperous societies.” Gilbert Houngbo, Chair of UN-Water and President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), emphasized the need to strengthen national delivery systems. A stakeholder dialogue took place at the report launch in Stockholm, in which participants discussed the GLAAS 2019 findings. [WHO Press Release] [Publication: [National Systems to Support Drinking-Water Sanitation and Hygiene – Global Status Report 2019] [Report Landing Page]


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