News12 December 2022
The ASEAN-5 mission took place from 6-9 December 2022. Nine organisations visited Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to connect with water professionals in the region and explore opportunities for collaboration on water-related challenges in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. The Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP) was assigned the organisation of part of the programme, and Henk Nieboer, interim Managing Director at NWP, was the mission leader of the ASEAN-5 delegation.
The ASEAN-5 region is one of the fastest growing markets in the world. With water challenges on the rise, the region is open to finding solutions with partners and technology providers. The ASEAN-5 region increasingly faces challenges. Population growth, rapid urbanisation and climate change are drivers of water shortages, floods and pollution.
The Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP) collaborated with the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), the Dutch Embassies in the ASEAN-5 region (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam), and handelsroute.nl to organise a trade mission to the Asia Water Expo and Forum. The delegation comprised the following organisations:
The delegation members had a busy schedule of exploring business opportunities and networking. On 6 December, the first day of the ASEAN-5 delegation visit to Asia Water, the day started with getting to know the mission participants.
This was followed by an impressive tour of Pantai 2, one of the largest sewage plants operated by Indah Water Konsortium Sdn Bhd.
On the programme of the second day was the Netherlands Water Innovation Forum, organised by NWP in collaboration with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Malaysia. Henk Nieboer, interim Managing Director at NWP and mission leader of the ASEAN-5 delegation, chaired the Forum programme. The welcome message by Jacques Werner, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Malaysia, was followed by an inspiring line-up of speakers and panel discussions, and included an exchange of perspectives from the ASEAN-5 countries. The keynote speaker was Datuk Ir Abdul Kadir Mohd Din, former President of the Malaysia Water Association (MWA).
After a short coffee break, advanced technology from the Netherlands was presented and discussed. It covered the themes of flood resilience, innovative water and wastewater solutions for local challenges, and included data driven solutions from the Netherlands.
The Netherlands Water Innovation Forum, held on 7 December, was well attended by over 70 water professionals and it was good to see that the topics discussed struck a chord with the attendees.
The ASEAN-5 delegation members presented their companies at a technical session of the Asia Water programme. The following presentations were held:
There are huge opportunities here in Malaysia in flood management, non-revenue water, energy savings at pumping stations and renewable energy. Looking forward to more Dutch companies participating.
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On 8 December, a special session was hosted on the Road to the UN 2023 Water Conference. The Conference, which will be held in New York in March 2023, is being co-organised by the Governments of the Netherlands and Tajikistan. Activities in the lead-up to the UN 2023 Water Conference were presented by Ms Karima El Korri, UN Resident Coordinator for Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei Darussalam, Mr H.E. Jacques Werner, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Malaysia, and by Mr H.E. Bahodur Rahmoniv, Counselor of the Embassy of Tajikistan in Malaysia. The special session was concluded with a round of questions and answers to the presenters.
The annual Malaysia Netherlands Water Dialogue, held on 9 December, was co-organised by the Malaysian Ministry of Environment and Water (KASA) and the Government of the Netherlands. The theme for this year's event, the fifth Dialogue, was flood mitigation and climate change.
The keynote address was given by YBhg Dato’ Seri Ir. Dr Zaini Ujang, Secretary General of the Ministry of Water and Environment Malaysia. After that, Marco Hartman of HKV presented the official report from the Dutch Risk Reduction Team (DRR-Team) to the Malaysian Ministry. Henk Nieboer of NWP lectured on Nature Based Solutions. The programme ended with a dialogue session on the theme ‘Flood Risk Reduction and Climate Change Resiliency’.
The room was packed with some 200 guests from government organisations and the private sector, including Asia Water trade visitors.
Networking continued at the Netherlands Lounge at the Asia Water Expo and Forum, which was visited by Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, Minister of Natural Resources and Climate Change of Malaysia.
NWP was designated by the Dutch Government as mission leader of the ASEAN-5 delegation. Our thanks go to our esteemed partners with whom we collaborated on this project: