GWS 2019 Press Centre

$100 Billion of Water Opportunity at the Global Water Summit, London

The Global Water Summit returns to London, UK, for the first time in a decade on 8-10th April 2019 for the largest annual global gathering of industry leaders. Gillian Tett, Chairman of the US Editorial Board and America Editor-at-Large, from the Financial Times will be delivering the Keynote speech.

Now in its 13th year, the Global Water Summit will be returning to London with a focus on “Disruptive Designs”. Water is one of the great challenges of the 21st century. It is at the front line of climate change. It is at the heart of the demographic challenges of population growth, migration and urbanisation. It lies on the nexus of our competing needs for food, resources and energy. Disruption is being felt everywhere and, despite the worries and the hysteria, this should be a time of excitement and optimism for the global water sector. Disruption creates enormous opportunities as well as obstacles, and it offers real solutions to previously intractable problems.

This is what is on the agenda for this year’s conference. Organised by Global Water Intelligence (GWI), the Summit will assemble business leaders from across the international water, finance and technology sectors to address the industry’s most pressing issues and how this adds up to over $100 billion of opportunity for participants in the global water sector.

The Opening Plenary of the Summit will feature Gillian Tett, Chairman of the US Editorial Board and America Editor-at-Large, Financial Times, alongside speakers Liv Garfield, Chief Executive, Severn Trent; Susanne Dorasil, Head of Division Water, Urban Development, Mobility, German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ); Steve Robertson, CEO, Thames Water, UK; and Bertrand Camus, Group Senior Executive Vice President, Africa, Middle East, India, Asia and Pacific, SUEZ. With sessions across two days within seven strands – Industry, Desal, Wastewater, Technology, Digital, Investment/Finance, and Leading Utilities of the World – the Global Water Summit will discuss every major topic making an impact on the global water sector today, from new methods of financing, to groundbreaking desalinated water prices, to the global effects of climate change, and how all of these issues could present the biggest opportunity for the sector in decades.

Across these strands and in the Big Plans roundtables, the Summit will offer delegates the opportunity to meet with the key contacts representing $100 billion of opportunity:

Emirates Water and Electricity Company: Bruce Smith, Acting Managing Director – $3.7 billion
NEOM: Gavin Von Tonder, Water Sector Head – $10 billion
National Water Company: Mohammed Al-Mowkley, CEO and Deputy Minister, Saudi Water Partnership Company: Khaled Al-Qureshi, CEO & Saline Water Conversion Corporation: Abdulla Al-Abdulkarim, Deputy Governor for Planning and Development – $35 billion
Water Resources Agency, Taiwan: Dr Chien-Hsin Lai, Director General – $5.5 billion
Ministry of Finance, Israel: Yitsik Marmelshtein, Head of Infrastructure & PPP Projects – $1.5 billion
Tirana Water Utility, Albania: Evis Gjebrea, Deputy Director – $30 million
Los Angeles Department of Water and Power: Martin Adams, Director of Water Operations & Richard Harasick, Senior Assistant General Manager, Water Systems – $1 billion
Thames Water, UK: Steve Robertson, CEO – $15.3 billion
Anglian Water, UK: Peter Simpson, CEO – $8.5 billion
United Utilities, UK: Martin Padley, Water and Scientific Services Director – $7.7 billion
Southern Water, UK: Ian McAulay, CEO – $5.2 billion
Northumbrian Water, UK: Heidi Mottram CBE, CEO – $3.9 billion
Severn Trent, UK: Liv Garfield, Chief Executive & Bob Stear, Chief Engineer – $8.6 billion

With over 150 speakers expected at the event, and 700+ key industry leaders, the Global Water Summit is vital in shaping the future direction of the water sector and driving business opportunities for its attending delegates.

The 2 day programme includes a huge variety of sessions, highlights of which include: Industrial Opportunities in Asia, exploring the opportunities and providing the contacts to break into this lucrative market; Desalination Operations Olympics, bringing together five of the world’s most proficient desalination plant operators to tell their stories; Digital-driven Growth Strategies, where GWI’s Digital Editor will talk through our latest digital market forecast with a panel of industry analysts with the objective of identifying the richest markets, opportunities and strategies; Accelerating Private Finance for SDG6, looking at how to reduce the seven year average for major projects to progress from conception to financial close; and the inauguration of new members into the Leading Utilities of the World (LUOW) network,

The Global Water Summit continually seeks to drive the international water industry forward by bringing together the great innovators and brightest minds from across the globe. In 2019 this includes a pre-conference workshop on the topic ‘Delivering $0.40 Desalination’. The meeting will be attended by a VIP working group of key participants in the large scale seawater desalination industry with a view to draw up a strategy for delivering water at $0.40/m3 within five years. The VIP invitation list includes the key off-takers, engineering consultants, project developers, EPC contractors and equipment suppliers active in the market. The organisers are currently accepting registrations of interest. Each registration will be reviewed, and invitations will be issued to potentially relevant parties.

The 2019 Global Water Awards will also be presented as part of the Global Water Summit. Delegates are invited to the Natural History Museum, London, on the evening of 9th April to attend the ceremony, recognising the most important achievements in the international water industry in the previous year, and rewarding those initiatives in the water, wastewater and desalination sectors that are moving the industry forward. You can see all the 2019 nominees at


The Global Water Summit 2019

The Global Water Summit 2019 in London is the major annual business meeting for the water industry and will offer you a rare opportunity to meet some of the world’s leading thinkers on the future of water. The event is widely known as the leading water industry conference, attracting more top water leaders and business executives than any other water event, and is vital in shaping the movements of the water industry each year.

The Global Water Summit is hosted by Global Water Intelligence (GWI), The Global Water Leaders Group and The Leading Utilities of the World Network.

The Global Water Summit 2019 will take place on 8 – 10 April 2019 at the Sofitel London Heathrow Hotel, London.

See the full 2019 Summit agenda here
See an up-to-date speakers list here

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