More than 140 parliamentarians and water specialists meet to prepare the parliamentary process for the 6th World Forum

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On June 10th 2011, the International Committee of the World Water Forum (IFC) and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (APCE) welcomed more than 140 parliamentarians and water specialists representing forty or so countries to a preparatory meeting of the parliamentary process for the 6th World Water Forum, (Marseille 2012).

An essential stage in the preparation of the Forum Political Process, the aim of this meeting was to:
-­? mobilize and inform international parliamentarians about the Forum and the different processes (thematic, regional
and political, roots and citizenship) which give it life,
-­? communicate on the focus of the 6th Forum that is the identification of solutions and commitments for access to
water and sanitation for all populations,
-­? gather their testimonies and the initiatives undertaken in their respective regions in matters of legislation on water,
-­? more generally, encourage them to contribute from this moment on to the preparation of this process with the Marseille Forum in mind and more especially on the project for a “water help desk”, for parliamentarians, a collaborative hub specializing in the water domain, through the creation of an international coordination committee bringing together experts and parliamentarians from all horizons.
With this in mind, a presentation of what had been achieved during previous forums, followed by a discussion around the four themes particularly crucial for parliamentarians, that is the right to water/water law, decentralization/drinking water and sanitation services, the management of cross-­?border waters and the preparation and monitoring of the budgets, not only provided an opportunity to obtain significant participation and involvement from the audience, but also constructive
proposals to bolster the route map of the parliamentary process of the 6th Forum, kicked off by this meeting in Strasbourg.
After a good number of speeches and debates on essential subjects such as access to water for everyone, the connection between the economic dimension and the management of water or raising awareness and involving young people through the project for a World Water Parliament for Youth, the participants agreed on the fact that all solutions for water, whether technical, economic or institutional had the right to strong political support. As was underlined by Philippe Lacoste, Chair of

the Commission of the Forum Political Process, "the 6th World Water Forum brings with it a message of hope. Certain of the

solutions are not at all costly. For others, of a larger dimension, international financing is available if the projects are well conceived and locally appropriate. But without determination, without the determination to reach a consensus, these solutions cannot be implemented".

The project of a water help desk for the legislators represents one of the cutting edge products of the parliamentary process promoted by the World Water Council, as its aim is to implement a virtual international center of legislative assistance for parliamentarians. Its main objective is to facilitate political and legal cooperation in terms of legislation on water as well as sharing best practices and national laws linked to water. This hub could both propose on-­?line examples and facilitate inter-­? personal relations between parliamentary representatives and/or assistants.

As Pierre Victoria, Delegate General of the French Water Circle and Governor of the World Water Council affirmed, this project is the result of the “need for an exchange of experiences and information”, clearly expressed by the participants during this preparatory meeting in Strasbourg and which should be designed rapidly under the impetus of the International Steering Committee so as to be presented in Marseille.
The French Deputy André Flajolet, Coordinator of the Forum Parliamentary Process, concluded the debates in these words “this strategy committee is indispensible for the credibility of the theme of water, common to humanity. We are honored that our colleagues from Europe, America, as well as Africa and Asia have been able to express their determination to be part of this committee; this commitment is a reflection of what the Marseille Forum is to be”.
Organized jointly by the French State, the World Water Council and the City of Marseille, the 6th World Water Forum which is to take place from March 12th to 17th 2012 in the ancient City of Phocea, will be the “Forum of Solutions”. The four preparatory processes of this Forum (political, regional, thematic and local) undertake to coordinate their work to prepare
and facilitate the implementation of beneficial solutions and commitments for the 15 important priorities for action identified.

To organize interviews, obtain photos and reports of the proposals emanating from the workshops, please contact: Aurore Sun –Press Attachee: +33 (6) 19 80 42 67 //
For more information: and
Videos and interviews of the parliamentarians and spokespersons are available on

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