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Kuching, Malaysia First in ASEAN to Host Prestigious Water Congress

Team Malaysia proudly waving the Sarawak and Malaysia flags at the IWA World Water Congress & Exhibition 2-28 bid announcement at Sao Paolo, Brazil

KUCHING, 16 September 2023: Kuching the capital city of Sarawak, Malaysia is the first destination in the ASEAN region to host the prestigious International Water Association World Water Congress and Exhibition (IWA WWC & E) in 2028 which was announced during a highly anticipated bidding mission.

The congress with the theme “Sustainability and Innovation for Water Resilience” is endorsed by The Right Honorable Dato’ Sri Haji Fadillah bin Haji Yusof – Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, The Right Honorable Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri (Dr.) Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari bin Tun Datuk Abang Haji Openg – Premier of Sarawak and The Honourable Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad – Minister of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change, Malaysia (NRECC).

The congress is expected to attract 10,000 participants from 80 countries; generating economic outcomes and legacies that will impact global stakeholders, professionals, and policymakers in the water industry.

“Kuching has made history for Malaysia and ASEAN by being selected to host the International Water Association World Water Congress and Exhibition 2028 today. Indeed, this is another significant milestone especially during our 60th Malaysia Day celebration; which all Malaysians can be proud of.” The Right Honourable Premier of Sarawak, Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri (Dr.) Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari bin Tun Datuk Abang Haji Openg quoted.

In the same light, NRECC Minister The Honorable Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad congratulated Kuching for being selected to host the congress. He further said that it was an honor for Malaysia. “Not only it will spur the water development locally, hosting such an event signifies the trust and confidence of IWA and global water leaders in Malaysia as a global water hub as enshrined in the 2040 Water Sector Transformation Agenda”, he said.

“It’s timely the congress is held in Kuching as Sarawak’s Water sector is undergoing transformation in line with our PCDS 2030 for economic, prosperity, social inclusivity and environmental sustainability, as we pursue with our policies to provide adequate, reliable, quality, efficient, affordable and safe water supply throughout Sarawak”, said The Honourable Datuk Haji Julaihi bin Haji Narawi, Minister for Utility and Telecommunication Sarawak.

“By focusing on Sustainability and Innovation for water resilience, the Congress will help accelerate the development of innovation to address climate change that have impacts on water resources, particularly in the ASEAN region. It will also open doors for international industry players in aligning with global movement for environmental sustainability for the greater good of whole community”, he added.

The bid presentation was delivered in Bordeaux, France on 14th September 2023 by a team of 3 speakers, namely Dr. Ir. Ts. Hj. Mohmad Asari bin Daud, Malaysian Water Association (MWA) President, Ts. Kelvin Kuek, Chairman of MWA Sarawak Branch and Dr. Norhayati Binti Abdullah, Council member of Malaysian Water Association.

“We were very impressed with Malaysia’s passion that was demonstrated not only during the bid presentation, but even in the initial phases of securing the congress. The global water community cares deeply about ongoing water management and sanitization issues. It is indeed inspiring to witness Malaysia’s commitment in spearheading transformation, collaboration and leaving lasting legacies that resonate with IWA’s organizational values.” said Mr. Thomas Mollenkopf, President of IWA when expressing his congratulations to Malaysia.

“The strong coalition of MWA and the Malaysia and Sarawak governments made this possible. The congress is a culmination of MWA’s efforts to be at the forefront of technology and water. It aligns with MWA’s vision to shape Malaysia and ASEAN’s water industry landscape.” said MWA’s President, Dr. Ir. Ts. Hj. Mohmad Asari bin Daud.

The delegation for the bidding mission was led by The Honorable Datuk Dr. Haji Abdul Rahman bin Junaidi, Deputy Minister for Utility and Telecommunication Sarawak along with the Malaysian Water Association. The delegation was supported by the Ministry Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change Malaysia, Business Events Sarawak, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau, along with various water industry counterparts.

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