SDG6 Utility Accelerator Workshop

An invite-only pre-conference workshop for utilities pursuing transformation.
13:30 – 17:30, May 8th, 2023 Global Water Summit, Berlin.

Utilities are the only actors that can deliver the scale of impact needed to hit SDG6. There are ambitious leaders across the global South ready to change gear, and funds eager to deploy where they are needed most. Now a range of bold development initiatives have emerged to bridge the bankability gap that has held the two apart for too long. 

25 utilities, serving a total population of 235 million, attended the 2023 Global Water Summit SDG6 Utility Accelerator Workshop, forming critical connections with DFIs and other key actors needed to drive the impact of these initiatives.  

Workshop Agenda: 

Utilities from across the globe were invited to meet with some of the most innovative financial, technical and operational assistance facilities on offer.  They took part in:

  • Interactive roundtables and discussions addressing common challenges of utilities seeking to transform their performance including, organisational change, climate resilience, operational improvement and financial autonomy. 
  • Launch of the 300 Water Leaders Group initiative – During this session, we saw the launch of the Global Water Leaders Group’s ‘300 Group’ initiative, a performance improvement network announced as part of the 2023 UN Water Conference’s Water Action Agenda. Its goal is to help 300 utilities deliver SDG6 water and sanitation. 

Invited Participants: 

With participation from: GIZ, IFC, World Bank, ADB, IBNET, and more. 

Utility participants: 

The population served by utilities confirmed to participate currently totals 235 million.

Attendees included CEOs and water leaders from utilities around the world, including: 

  • Aguas Andinas
  • National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC), Uganda 
  • Dhaka WASA
  • Indah Water Konsortium
  • Empresa De Acueducto Y Alcantarillado De Pereira
  • Lahore Water and Sanitation Agency
  • United Water Supply Company of Georgia
  • Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure, Georgia
  • Aegea Saneamento
  • Embasa
  • Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board
  • Ghana Water Company Ltd
  • Administración Nacional de Acueductos y Alcantarillados (ANDA)
  • Mombasa Water and Sewerage Corporation
  • Manila Water
  • Apă Canal Chişinău
  • Chisinau Municipality
  • Aguas da Regiao Metropolitana de Maputo
  • Nepal Water Supply Corporation
  • National Water Supply & Drainage Board, Sri Lanka
  • Karachi Water and Sewerage Board
  • Kaduna State Water Corporation
  • Lagos Water
  • Punjab AAB-E-PAK Authority (PAPA)

Who could participate? 

This was a by invitation-only meeting, where key representatives from utilities, development finance institutions and technical assistance programmes received personal invitations to attend. 

The mission of reaching SDG6 through the 300 Group Initiative remains. If you have any relevant expertise in these areas, then do reach out to us here

The Launch of the 300 Water Leaders Group Initiative
A commitment under the UN Water Action Agenda

The 300 Group is an initiative launched by the Global Water Leaders Groups as a commitment to the UN Water Action Agenda. The objective of the 300 Group is to create a network of 300 utilities committed to delivering SDG6 to 300 million people by 2030. The rationale is as follows: 

1) Utilities are the only institutions capable of delivering SDG 6 at scale. Utilities therefore have to be at the heart of any proposal to accelerate the delivery of SDG 6 before the 2030 deadline.  

2) The main reason why utilities are not delivering SDG 6 is because they are not considered bankable. The funding is available, but the performance of the utilities is often so weak that donors and lenders do not want to fund them. Instead, the vast majority of funding goes to a tiny minority of high performance utilities.  

3) The key to achieving SDG 6 is therefore to transform the performance of the utility sector so that it becomes more bankable.  

4) The 300 Group is a peer-to-peer performance improvement network that brings utility leaders together to help each other and to take part in DFI designed programmes such GIZ/KfW’s Urban Water Catalyst Fund, the IFC’s Utilities for Climate initiative and the World Bank’s Utility of the Future programme. 

Expected Impact 
A peer-to-peer performance improvement programmes act as both a motivator for leadership, a source of trusted technical assistance and an incubator for utilities seeking to participate in DFI sponsored programmes. 

300 utilities in the global south. The ‘SDG6 Utility Accelerator’ at the Global Water Summit, Berlin, will be inaugurating the 300 Group’s first utility partners.