WASAC Group explored partnership opportunities to tackle Non Revenue Water

At the Water Development Congress & Exhibition 2023, held in Kigali from December 10th to 14th, 2023, the Water and Sanitation Corporation (WASAC Group) engaged in discussions with various companies and water utilities to address the reduction of non-revenue water losses and overcome obstacles to water access in Rwanda.

This congress, organized by the International Water Association (IWA) and the Government of Rwanda through WASAC Group, attracted approximately 1,000 delegates, including policymakers, water professionals, experts, water utilities corporations, academics, technologists, private sector representatives, and civil society participants.

In his welcome remarks, Prof. Omar Munyaneza the CEO of WASAC Group thanked IWA for choosing Rwanda to host the 7th edition of The Water Development Congress and Exhibition, and encouraged participants to share knowledge and experiences in addressing water and sanitation challenges.

On the sidelines of the Congress, the management of WASAC Group held discussions with different companies, water and sanitation utilities and partners, in a bid to explore possible collaborations in addressing water distribution and sanitation challenges in Rwanda.

The conversations with Itron, a provider of smart meters, data collection, and utility software systems utilized by over 8,000 utilities worldwide focused on how its technology could assist WASAC Group in significantly reducing water loss within its distribution networks. The Irons’ technology offers capabilities such as detecting pipe damage and monitoring water pressure, enabling proactive measures to address issues and optimize water supply efficiency.

Discussions with Yoko Hattori, the Director of Water Resources at JICA-Japan, and Mr. Osward M. Chanda, the Director of Water Development and Sanitation at the African Development Bank (AFDB) focused on enhancing the current collaboration in the fields of water supply and sanitation.

During a meeting with the Hungarian Ambassador to Rwanda, based in Nairobi, Kenya, Mr. Zsolt Mészáros, and Dr. Károly Kovács, President of the Hungarian Water Partnership, Prof. Omar Munyaneza, the Chief Executive Officer of WASAC Group, discussed Hungary's $52 million financial support for upgrading the capacity of the Karenge Water Treatment Plant from 15,000m³ to 36,000 m³ of water/day.

The CEO of WASAC Group also met with Eng. Steven Mwale, the Managing Director of Nkana Water Supply & Sanitation Ltd from Zambia, to exchange knowledge and experiences in water and sanitation management in their respective countries.

The Water Development Congress & Exhibition 2023 was conducted under the theme “Water, sanitation, and climate resilience – keys to a water-wise future”.

The Minister of Minister of Infrastructure, Dr Jimmy Gasore who opened the congress highlighted the importance of water and called upon all participants to preserve it. “Water is needed in energy generation, agriculture, health and other key sectors and it should be at the center of the global political agenda. Looking at the current climate change situation, we are called to work together and define the solutions to protecting this noble resource that drives development at different scales.”

The Chief Executive Officer, Prof. Omar Munyaneza who concluded the conference on behalf of the Government of Rwanda, emphasized the importance of collaboration in addressing global water & sanitation challenges, specifically in advancing the goal 6 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to ensure access to clean water and sustainable sanitation for all.