His Majesty Willem-Alexander, King of the Netherlands,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
At the outset, I welcome all of you to this event “Water Unites Us”.
Today, the issue of uniting the international community to address the water problems is gaining importance as never before.
Water, as the main source of life, is under severe pressure due to its unreasonable and wasteful use, as well as the consequences of climate change, rapid population growth, urbanization and other factors affecting water.
To reverse this trend, urgent action is needed at all levels. Otherwise, our health, environmental sustainability, access to healthy food and natural resources, and ultimately, the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals remain at risk.
To this end, our country has been playing an effective role on the global agenda for the past two decades as an advocate for water and climate issues. During this period, at the initiative of Tajikistan, the UN General Assembly adopted 9 resolutions aimed at uniting the international community to address the existing water-related issues and intensify actions in this regard.
I would like to recall that at our initiative, the UN declared 2013 as the International Year of Water Cooperation which has contributed to this process.
Indeed, water has a creative power. Thanks to the water cooperation over the last decades, nations with different geography, economy, culture, and language are now making joint efforts to achieve the common water goals.
The Republic of Tajikistan and the Kingdom of the Netherlands have done a lot in this relatively short period to advance the water and climate agenda. Proof of this is the proactive participation of the two countries in the High Level Panel on Water, the Water and Climate Alliance and the Dushanbe Water Process, as well as other global platforms.
Today, we are hosting a major historic Conference - the UN Conference on the Mid-term Comprehensive Review of the Implementation of the Objectives of the International Decade for Action "Water for Sustainable Development, 2018-2028"
This partnership serves as an example of cooperation and solidarity, especially between developed and developing, and upstream and downstream countries.
I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to His Highness Mr. William Alexander and the Government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands for their fruitful cooperation in this process.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The conference will commence tomorrow. The expectations of the international community from this conference are high.
Indeed, convening the UN Water Conference will not address our issues. However, I firmly believe that the international community, as a big family in advancing the global water issue, collectively may solve these issues, helping one another, using the existing mechanisms for solving water problems in all countries.
I also believe that with a strong political will, commitment and effective actions on implementation of the Water Action Agenda, we - all UN member states, the UN system, financial institutions, international organizations and all stakeholders can achieve the core goal of this conference.
I am sure that availing this opportunity and relying on the unifying power of water, we will contribute to the effective results of this historic conference.
I thank you for attention!