The 2022 Africa Water Policy Report was launched during a High Level Panel at the 9th World Water Forum in Dakar, Senegal on Wednesday 23 March.
Produced in response to a request from the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW), the Report highlights Africa water issues for high level political leadership and policy makers’ attention. It aims to support countries in their efforts to achieve better water outcomes, and reflects the opinions, perspectives and experience of Ministers, agency heads, senior officials, and others whose job it is to make difficult decisions on water management in their respective countries.
The Africa Water Policy Report is based on the experiences and perspectives of national water leaders from 26 countries of Africa. Among them, they have responsibility for achieving ‘sustainable water for all’ for over 900 million people.
In summary, this is what they are saying:
- The highest water-related risks their countries face are increased demand for water, climate change and associated pressures on water supplies and worsening floods and droughts.
- The greatest challenge many face is with the prioritisation of water issues within governments.
- Administrative problems of fragmented water institutions and inadequate data are of as much, if not greater, concern than factors such as public resistance to reforms.
- COVID-19 has raised the priority and urgency of water and sanitation services.
- Most Sustainable Development Goal 6 targets are ‘challenging’ or ‘impossible’, with lack of financing and governance problems the main reasons for this. With development assistance, there are concerns about the adequacy of current arrangements.
- While groundwater is considered by most national water leaders of Africa to be essential to their country’s future water supply, far fewer consider their groundwater is being used sustainably.
- When compared to the Global Water Survey, national water leaders of Africa are more confident than their counterparts across the world as a whole that their countries are increasing attention to water as the result of COVID-19 and more conscious of the importance of groundwater. They are also more challenged by achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6 targets overall and more concerned about risks of increasing demand for water, inadequate data and information, and lack of finance for key SDG 6 targets.
The 2022 Africa Water Policy Report was prepared by the Water Policy Group in partnership with the University of New South Wales Sydney Global Water Institute.