Cities are always a hot topic of discussion for us working in development and they took center stage in Stockholm this year. The SDGs provide even more impetus for cities to be inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. This goal is inextricably linked to securing safe and sustainable access to WASH services for all and managing water as it travels across the city.
As cities grow and become thirstier and often dirtier, different users and uses of water are competing for this scarce resource. We therefore have to be smart in how we provide clean water, sanitation and related services to all city dwellers, especially the poor.
But the SDGs will not be met without significant changes in how the sector is financed. The financing gap is growing and it is likely that public and concessional finance will not close this gap. Thus, increased commercial finance will be needed, regardless of whether services are provided by the public or private sector. In developed economies, long-term financing is raised in domestic capital markets and we are seeing increased evidence that this is working in emerging markets as well. To reach this goal, service providers need to become more technically and financially efficient and governance and regulatory structures managing water need to be more transparent.
Read the full article by Guangzhe Chen on The World Bank Blog
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