Jeddah (UNA-OIC) – On World Water Day, held on 22 March every year, Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr. Yousef Al-Othaimeen reiterated the need for concerted efforts to address the challenges of reliable access to water as well as the management of other water-related risks for better health, livelihood and economic prosperity of all.
“This year’s International World Water Day theme ‘Valuing Water’ once again underlines the critical impact of water on all aspects of people’s wellbeing around the globe,” said Al-Othaimeen.
He stressed that increasing water shortages, poor water quality, droughts, or floods compounded by climate change prevalent in many of the OIC member states have resulted in economic and demographic changes affecting negatively on their socio-economic development.
Facing the rising challenges in the domain of water, Al-Othaimeen emphasized the significance of international cooperation to address the diverse water-related issues. To this end, the OIC Member States adopted an OIC Water Vision in 2012. He outlined that this comprehensive document provides a framework for promoting cooperation for a water-secure future through increased collaboration, exchange of best practices, knowledge sharing, capacity building and development of expertise in various water-related disciplines.
The Secretary-General reaffirmed the OIC’s commitment to strengthening international partnerships involving all stakeholders, including governments, civil society institutions, international and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for sustainable management of water resources, promoting societal awareness of water conservation and storage, development of alternative water sources and regulations for mutual benefits and achievement of the shared goal for a water-secure future.