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BALI: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Energy Transition and Water Transformation Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof held bilateral discussions with the World Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) on challenges, management experience, and financial models from various countries related to water issues.

The discussion with the World Bank delegation led by Sustainable Development Practice Group East Asia and Pacific regional director Anna Wellenstein was held at the Bali International Convention Centre, Nusa Dua in conjunction with the top leadership meeting at the 10th World Water Forum (WWF) which ended today.

Fadillah stated that the meeting aimed to facilitate knowledge exchange and establish agreements for further discussions involving Malaysian and World Bank officials to explore forms of cooperation, such as workshops or technical advice.

“From there, Malaysia will determine the form of cooperation that can be carried out, whether through workshops or technical advice required to answer the financial challenges in water management.

“The experiences from other countries and the new business models obtained are expected to provide new ideas on how we can develop and ensure the sustainability and continuity of our water supply in all aspects,” he told the Malaysian media.

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According to Fadillah, the discussion with the UNECE delegation led by Environment Division director Marco Keiner focused on the management of transboundary rivers shared with neighbouring countries such as Thailand, Brunei, and Indonesia.

He emphasised the need for joint management to ensure clean water supply and disaster risk mitigation such as floods, using the example of cooperation involving the Golok River estuary on the border of Kelantan, Malaysia, and Narathiwat, Thailand.

“We also need to cooperate in the technical support aspect of UNECE because the river border in Malaysia includes several states such as Perak, Kedah, Penang, Pahang, and Kelantan,“ he said.

Fadillah believes that coordinating the maintenance of river cleanliness, flood and erosion management, as well as good water supply requires the cooperation of all states involved.

UNECE is a regional commission under the jurisdiction of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. It was established to promote economic cooperation and integration among member states consisting of 56 member states in Europe, as well as some outside Europe.

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