Badung, Bali (ANTARA) - Fiji, following Indonesia's step, has also pushed the establishment of a global water fund to help develop access to clean water for human needs (water development) in developing countries and the Pacific region.

"We need to find something like what we have for climate change ... we have global fund for climate change and why don't someone come up with the (global) water fund so they can help address water issues for developing countries in the (Pacific) region," Fiji's President Wiliame Katonivere stated in a special interview with ANTARA in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Sunday.

Katonivere said that Fiji could not conduct its own water development due to its limited capacity. Therefore, a global funding system was needed.

"We cannot develop it because we are limited, but with the global (water) fund where there is a 'pool' and we have the expertise, we have our people there who experience in the field. We would be able to address it (water issue), not only in Fiji but for the other Pacific islands countries," he pointed out.

For this reason, the President of Fiji considers it important to encourage international cooperation in handling water problems, especially through the establishment of a global water fund.

Furthermore, Katonivere also invited Indonesia to collaborate in increasing donor countries' interest in supporting developing countries, including countries in the Pacific region, by advancing sustainable practices that support the environment.

"What we need to do is to support the sustainable practice and the environment. We are doing it in Fiji, and also in Indonesia, and there are other countries who do it too. Because if we (Fiji and Indonesia) do that then the unable countries will follow suit," he said.

"And then together we grow the interest of donor countries to have a 'pool' where they can finance water development in this part of the world," Katonivere added.

The Indonesian government is encouraging the establishment of a Global Water Fund at the 10th World Water Forum to respond to budget imbalances and accelerate the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Goal 6, namely achieving access to clean water and sanitation for all.

Currently, there are 2.2 billion people in the world who cannot get access to clean water.

The Global Water Fund --which is projected to cover water infrastructure needs, mitigate water-related crises or disasters, and adaptation to climate change-- will be a concrete measure in overcoming world water problems.

Indonesian government has formed the Indonesian Water Fund (IWF) as an effort to encourage investment and provide clean water throughout the country.

Fiji's President Wiliame Katonivere is visiting Indonesia to attend the 10th World Water Forum held in Bali on May 18-25.

The World Water Forum is the largest international meeting to discuss and formulate policies regarding world water management and sanitation.

The World Water Forum is a global water forum is held every three years to discuss crucial issues related to water, such as water conservation, clean water and sanitation, food and energy security, and mitigation of natural disasters.

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Reporter: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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