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PM’s appointment in UN panel on water a recognition of Jordan’s efforts — Nasser

By JT - Apr 23,2016 - Last updated at Apr 23,2016

AMMAN — The UN decision to appoint Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour as a member of the High-Level Panel on Water is a result of the fruitful efforts of Jordan in the sector, Water Minister Hazem Nasser said Saturday. 

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim announced the appointment of Ensour and nine other heads of states and governments on Friday as members of the panel, which aims to take urgent action to achieve the sustainable development goal for water and sanitation, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra.

Another reason for choosing Ensour, is that Jordan is dealing with “enormous water challenges”, especially with the increasing number of refugees, now constituting more than 20 per cent of the population, Nasser noted. 

The minister explained that water has become one of the most important global issues and the root of many of the world’s conflicts, as clean water resources are declining, especially in the Middle East, the Mediterranean and parts of West Asia, which contain only 0.9 per cent of the world’s water resources.

He also highlighted the impact of climate change on these regions, many of which are receiving less rainfall.

According to the UN’s estimates, there are 2.8 billion people around the world who suffer from a shortage of sanitation services, and the number of people suffering from water shortage is expected to rise from 663 million to 904 million by 2025.

In addition to Ensour, the panel includes the prime ministers of Australia, Bangladesh and the Netherlands, and the presidents of Hungary, South Africa, Senegal and Tajikistan. It is chaired by the presidents of Mexico and Mauritius. 

Former prime minister of South Korea Han Seung-soo and the environment minister of Peru will also be advisers to the panel, according to Petra.

 

The members will serve a two-year term.

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