World Bank, WSSCC Highlight Sanitation Financing Needs
Photo by IISD | Lynn Wagner
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International organizations highlighted the need to adequately finance urban sanitation for the 2.4 billion of the world’s population with poor access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH).

The World Bank estimates that financing WASH will require US$114 billion annually until the year 2030.

The World Bank, World Water Council and World Water Supply & Sanitation Council (WSSCC) launched projects for WASH facilities at local markets and other places where women work, with menstrual hygiene an important focus.

1 May 2017: International organizations are highlighting the need to adequately finance urban sanitation for the 2.4 billion of the world’s population with poor access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). The World Bank estimates that financing WASH will require US$114 billion annually until the year 2030. The World Bank, World Water Council and World Water Supply & Sanitation Council (WSSCC) have launched projects for WASH facilities at local markets and other places where women work, with menstrual hygiene an important focus.

Marking Labor Day on 1 May, the WSSCC highlighted its Joint Programme on Gender, Hygiene and Sanitation, drawing attention to its recent research findings, which show that the lack of sanitation services has an economic impact. Rockaya Aidara, WSSCC policy officer, noted that many workplaces and markets in the countries that were studied – including Cambodia, the Philippines and Viet Nam – have inadequate toilets, or none at all – resulting in health risks, discomfort, lack of dignity, and lost work days for many women and girls.

Many workplaces and markets in Cambodia, the Philippines and Viet Nam have inadequate toilets, or none at all, resulting in health risks, discomfort, lack of dignity, and lost work days for many women and girls.

On 21 April, the World Water Council (WWC) launched its project, “Increasing Financial Flows for Sanitation,” as part of its work on cities. The project is raising awareness of innovative financing instruments for sanitation services in three cities: Blumenau in Brazil; Nairobi in Kenya; and Jodhpur in India.

On 20 April, the World Bank co-hosted a meeting of finance ministers in connection with the ‘Sanitation and Water for All’ (SWA) partnership, as part of the 2017 Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. The meeting featured remarks from World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed, and actor-producer Matt Damon in a panel discussion on financing sanitation.

Kim noted that public financing will only fund around one-third of current needs, and that private and local sources of capital could become part of the financing mix, while ownership could continue to be managed by public entities. Mohammed called for spending scarce resources more effectively, and stressed the high cost to women and girls from the lack of sanitation services and the cultural taboos around menstruation. Damon introduced WaterCredit loans, a financing initiative that has enabled poor households to take out micro-loans for installing toilets and taps in their homes. Damon is the co-founder of the non-profit initiative ‘Water.org’, together with Gary White, which promotes market-driven financial solutions to water problems. He highlighted the health benefits of ensuring safe water for all, and urged all concerned to work together to solve the water and sanitation crisis by 2030. [WSSCC Web Page] [WWC Press Release] [SWA Webcast of Panel] [SWA Website]

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