Thursday, May 02, 2013

Experiencing innovations and new cooperation perspectives in water management at WASSER BERLIN INTERNATIONAL

Cooperation under the framework of international project PRESTO has accelerated recently. After successful Water Management Policy Forum organized in March 2013 in Minsk (Belarus), PRESTO partners visited “Wasser Berlin International” Congress and Trade Fair in Berlin (Germany) on 23 April 2013. This world-leading exhibition on innovative technology in water supply and treatment is attended biennially by 28 000 visitors and creates perfect platform for discussions with international experts on a variety of water-related topics. Congress helps specialists to improve their expertise, learn how other countries address water management challenges and provide networking opportunities in highly dynamic water market. Using this opportunity, PRESTO partners not only visited the Congress but also organised a Belarusian Country Forum open for external visitors.

Among invited speakers there was a representative of Ministry of Housing and Communal Services of the Republic of Belarus, Mr. Siarhei Tsimoshkin; Mr. Rüdiger Heidebrecht, Head of Department Training and International Cooperation from DWA - German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste and Mr. Bernd Zacharias, Head of Regional Section Russia of German Water Partnership.  

Speakers at the Forum: Siarhei Tsimoshkin, Rüdiger Heidebrecht, Vladimir Anoufriev, Bernd Zacharias; facilitation: Matthias Barjenbruch, Technical University of Berlin.
Photo by Agnieszka Ilola, UBC EnvCom.
Mr. Tsimoshkin in his speech highlighted the importance of public-private collaboration and stated that currently, based on a call from the Belarusian government, a new law on public-private partnerships is being developed, and that in the future it will foster investments in the water sector. Moreover, he admitted that the Ministry of Communal Services and Housing of Belarus is elaborating further ways of cooperation in reducing nutrient inputs to the Baltic Sea. For that the Ministry, together with the regional Departments of housing and communal services, searches for water and sewage utilities that directly affect the state of the Baltic Sea drainage area, to encourage their participation in the new projects with international investments for the advanced treatment technologies. ”It is evident that exchanging of experiences and knowledge in the projects like PRESTO can contribute to mutual understanding and accelerate the future cooperation process” Mr. Tsimoshkin said.

Mr. Rüdiger Heidebrecht, Head of Department Training and International Cooperation from DWA - German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste (Hennef) presented international activities of DWA and invited PRESTO partners to collaboration with other leading European water alliances as IWA (International Water Association), EWA (European Water Association) or GWP (German Water Partnership).

After the Forum all partners had a chance to participate in the guided tour at the Trade Fair organized by the Technical University of Berlin and get familiar with the latest trends in pipeline engineering, water construction machinery, measuring and analysis technology and equipment.
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PRESTO partners visiting fair's stand of Grundfos, one of the world's leading pump manufacturers.
Photo by Agnieszka Ilola, UBC EnvCom.

Text by: Agnieszka Ilola, UBC EnvCom, Project Officer, PRESTO Project

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