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World Cities Day aims to promote the international community’s interest in global urbanization, push forward cooperation among countries in meeting opportunities and addressing challenges of urbanization, and contribute to sustainable urban development around the world. Water is inextricably linked to these aims and to the health and well-being in cities – it is a critical part of the fabric of city life. It is in this spirit that British Water is proud to highlight a new trading relationship between the UK and India that will help transform water and wastewater services for the country’s 1.3 billion population.

As the national government pushes forward with vast programmes to deliver drinking water and sanitation to every household and to restore and rejuvenate the nation’s rivers, a collaborative agreement has been signed by British Water, cGanga – a think-tank set up by the Indian Government’s Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation (Jal Shakti) – and the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG).

India’s vision and intent to secure this critical infrastructure and enhance its environmental stewardship should be supported by the global water community. It should also galvanize cities in other countries to move at pace towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals on water and sanitation.

UN figures tell us that today, 55% of the world’s population lives in urban areas, a proportion that is expected to increase to 68% by 2050. This will bring unique and complex challenges, but also great opportunity and potential for cities across the world, all of which will be underpinned by the management of water resources.

– Lila Thompson
Chief Executive
British Water, UK

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