Working Towards Water Security

The International Water Bank (IWB), an official W12 Global Strategic partner, which has been established to invest and finance innovative solutions in the water sector that secure sustainable water demand globally, will visit Cape Town for the world’s first W12 water congress,  on the week of 18 May, 2020.   The IWB will actively engage with companies and governments to identify projects and initiatives in which they could invest.

By 2050 almost two billion people living in cities will suffer water shortages as the demand for water increases by up to 70% (World Bank).   Extremely high water stress can threaten national security.  Solutions must be found and implemented now.   The need to work together locally and internationally to ensure the future of our world’s water is evident. W12 is the first congress of its kind globally to address this.

W12 aims to create the framework for the first “Major City Best Practice Water Protocol” and to raise awareness about the impact of climate change and the role of cities and citizens in finding solutions for resilience in a water-scarce world.   The responsibility of making sure the world preserves and has enough water is not solely the responsibility of Government and Municipalities but a combined effort from the public, corporate businesses and authorities globally.

The story from South Africa shows that by combined efforts we are able to divert imminent issues as well as prepare sustainable long-term plans.   What we have seen is that the world is keen to learn from South Africa and this is an opportunity for knowledge transfer and job creation.

The new Water and Sanitation Master Plan from South Africa is also a strategic piece of work which has the world’s attention and is something of which South Africa can be very proud – along with the clear statement from Minister Londiwe Sisulu that South Africa is looking for partnerships including banks.

“Water drives job creation and economic growth,” says the new UN report.

An estimated three out of four jobs that make up the global workforce are either heavily or moderately dependent on water.   This means that water shortages and problems of access to water and sanitation could limit economic growth and job creation in the coming decades, according to a UN report.    The United Nations World Water Development Report, Water and Jobs, also notes that half of the world’s workers – 1.5 billion people – are employed in eight water and natural resource-dependent industries.

Strategic interventions from the International Water Bank

Representatives from the IWB, facilitated by SOSNPO and W12, are inviting corporates and individuals that have developed or want to pitch water-related initiatives and enterprises, to meet with IWB in meetings, to during the W12 Congress.

Businesses and entrepreneurs have a crucial role to play in the new water and climate change arena and evidenced by the emergence of a new type of entrepreneur.  Pioneers are producing conceptual ideas, new products and transformative business models that have intelligence and integrity and this is what SOSNPO, the organisers of the event, will showcase at the W12 Congress in Cape Town in 2020.

Almar Water, CEO and Chairman of IDA, is also looking at possible investments in South Africa due to their heavily expanding activities in the African continent.

Water is a human right and the IWB mission is to provide integral solutions to people’s need for water globally and to support sustainable development of the water resources management and their focus is to improve people’s conditions and livelihood, while also providing finance for the water industry and yielding attractive returns for investors.

W12 has invited 17 international cities to participate and confirmed delegations at present date are from China, South Korea, Brazil, Russia, US and Spain.

Other participating International Organisations are:

IWA – International Water Bank
SIWI – Stockholm Water Week –
AWS – Alliance for Water Stewardship –
WorldBank –

W12 Congress – Cities. Water. Solutions.


Editors Notes

  • 27th – 28th January 2020: ‘By invitation’ sessions for the task team, conveners and stakeholders to meet and continue work on the framework for the protocol as planned. Their work and findings will be announced at a press conference on the 29th of January.
  • The protocol work will continue until the public facing sessions take place at W12 Congress during the week of 18th of May 2020. The protocol will then be discussed with the invited cities and international stakeholders.  The framework will be distributed to the cities beforehand, to give them a chance to comment, to engage with the results and to prepare their questions.
  • In the run-up to and while the civil/public sessions take place in May, W12 has organised for the world’s most interactive water installation to be exhibited in Cape Town from March until May 2020 (venue to be announced soon). The Miyah Pavilion World of Water pavilion is a massive and highly impressive installation which will give people a clear insight into the world’s water crisis and, through interactive edutainment, will demonstrate how they can play their part in helping to preserve, save and manage water.

Further speaker and celebrity involvement will be announced on a bi-weekly basis.

Confirmed international organisations that are participating at W12 Congress include:

  • IDA (International Desalination Association)
  • IWB (International Water Bank)
  • SIWI (Stockholm Water Week)


Issued on behalf of SOS NPO and W12 Congress

W12 Congress/SOS NPO on Facebook and Instagram