Rwanda’s Water and Sanitation Corporation (WASAC) and the Public Utilities Board (PUB) – Singapore’s National Water Agency – have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which is expected to improve water management through leveraging technology.
The agreement aims to facilitate knowledge exchange in the fields of water supply, water network management, used water management and resilience in the face of climate change, according to a statement from the signatories.
It is also intended to deepen collaboration, aid capacity development and knowledge exchange on water supply management.
This includes exchanging knowledge on water technologies in detecting [and fixing] water supply network leakage and water quality monitoring between both parties to the agreement.
The deal was signed on Tuesday April 19, 2022, on the side-lines of a five-day Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) 2022 and Water Leaders Summit, which concludes today, April 21, 2022.
SIWW is a global premier platform to share and co-create innovative water solutions.
Signatories to the MoU are Gisele Umuhumuza, the acting CEO of WASAC and Ng Joo Hee, the CEO of PUB.
According to the officials, the agreement is also expected to facilitate the deployment of promising technologies to address water challenges in both utilities.
Such exchanges, they noted, will be facilitated through study visits to water infrastructure and facilities in Singapore, meetings with Singapore water companies, and capacity building through training programmes at the Singapore Water Academy.
Thanks to the support of PUB, Singapore was named the top Asian city in water sustainability development in 2015, with the nation having the highest drinking water and sanitation standards in the region.
Knowledge exchange between parties will also focus on research and development, and facilitate the commercialisation of new technologies in new markets.
Michael Toh, the Director of Industry and Technology Collaboration Department at PUB said that they were interested in sharing the know-how and innovation in water management.
“There are areas which utilities face, for example, demand management, water recycling, water treatment, how do we improve service to our customers,” he said.
Umuhumuza said that within three months, they would like to get a clear roadmap of applicable and strategic activities they would like to undertake in collaboration with PUB.
Rwanda targets 100% universal access to clean water by 2024 from 89.2 per cent (of households using improved drinking water source), according to the Rwanda Household Survey 2019/2020 published in March last year.
To achieve that, the country has been investing in setting up new water networks, or upgrading the already existing ones.
Meanwhile, the country has been grappling with water loss as a result of leakage and an ineffective billing system.
As of 2020, 44 per cent of water supplied within different networks was lost, according to recent statistics by Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Agency (RURA) on water and sanitation.
Also, Rwanda faces challenges in used water management. The country has been working on a plan to set up a multimillion dollar central sewerage system in the City of Kigali for effective waste water treatment.