Learning About the Water Business in South East Asia

6 Jul 2011                        

Here I am, on my second day as a roving reporter for the Singapore International Water Week (SIWW). This time round, I’m covering the South East Asian Business Forum held on 6 June. If it sounds like a dry affair to you, just remember that not everything in life is fun and games, and that you’re not the ones writing a report on it.

The forum soon got underway, starting with an introduction to the panel of speakers. I’ll admit that I was quite impressed by the panel of speakers present, which consisted of distinguished water experts/business men from Indonesia, Thailand and The Philippines.

The forum itself brought up several interesting topics, including different plans by the government to improve supply of water to rural and urban areas (taking into account infrastructure, population density, etc), statistics on the current infrastructures used, as well as the privatisation of water management.

The latter, referred to by the speakers as Public-Private Partnership (PPP), was a recurring topic amongst the three presenting speakers. I suggest anyone interested to go look it up. Everyone else in attendance of the forum seemed sold on the idea.

To finish off, I did find the forum to be fairly informative, and it opened my eyes to the different standards of water service people in different parts of the same countries, in South East Asia. I’m also personally glad that despite this being a business forum, nobody ever seemed to forget the main topic of the whole event – Water. The SIWW is still currently ongoing, and anyone interested should definitely attend the remaining events.

By Zainal Ariffin

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