World water leaders cite PHL team in Korean event

World water leaders cited the 20-year-old successful public-private partnership (PPP) between the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) and its concessionaires Manila Water, Maynilad Water  and San Miguel Corp’s Luzon Clean Water Corp. at the First Asia Water Week and Korea International Water Week in Gyeongju, South Korea.

The three-day event brought together some 2,500 water stakeholders who discussed ways to establish lasting partnerships that are needed to resolve water issues around the world.

MWSS Administrator Reynaldo V. Velasco, Manila Water President Ferdinand M. de la Cruz and Maynilad President Ramoncito S. Fernandez shared stellar billing in the twin Korea water conferences as they presented “Water Security under the Duterte Administration and the Successful PPP in the Philippines”.

“The Korea water conferences was an important event to promote the country’s effective, participative and successful PPP legal framework started in 1997 by President Fidel V. Ramos through a concession agreement in the water industry that the Philippines, through Manila Water, is now exporting to Asean countries like Myanmar, Vietnam and Indonesia,” Velasco said.

In his speech, de la Cruz said, “Water PPP can work in many places, provided the regulatory framework is clear, transparent and consistent. An output-based scheme is appropriate for the private sector to provide an environment to perform well and in an efficient manner. Water PPP has worked in Metro Manila. It has worked in other parts of the Philippines. It can work in many more places in Asia. Manila Water is a testimony that Asians can solve Asian water issues.”

Fernandez said, “Our partnership with the MWSS has benefited millions of Filipinos, spurred economic activity with our investments and generated thousands of jobs. We are now setting our sights to other areas in the Philippines, as there are still 15 million Filipinos without access to water.

We want to replicate our success story to other areas so others can also enjoy improved water supply and sanitation.”