The 2nd Asia-Pacific Water Summit will focus on the theme "Water Security and Water-related Disaster Challenges: Leadership and Commitment." The summit is organized by the Asia-Pacific Water Forum (APWF) and hosted by the Royal Thai Government in collaboration with international, regional and local partners. The Prime Minister of Thailand has invited the heads of governments of 49 countries in Asia and the Pacific to join the summit to step up their leadership and commitment to water security and water-related disaster challenges in the region.
The first summit was held in Beppu, Japan on 3-4 December 2007, and raised the commitment of the region's leaders for water and sanitation investments through the Message from Beppu. The leaders also called for the establishment of a network of regional water knowledge hubs, which were established soon after.
The summits offer top-level policy and decision-makers an opportunity for dialogue to showcase leadership in decision-making, excellence in practice and innovation, and concrete results that have had substantial impacts at all levels. Leaders from the private sector, local governments, civil society, youth and media in the region are also welcomed. ADB is a founding member of APWF and a key supporter of the summits.
To inform the leaders ahead of the summit, ADB and APWF launched the Asian Water Development Outlook 2013 on 13 March 2013 at Asia Water Week in Manila. The study found that more than 75% of the countries in Asia and the Pacific are experiencing a serious lack of water security, with many of them facing an imminent water crisis unless immediate steps are taken to improve management of water resources.
AWDO 2013 provides the first quantitative and comprehensive analysis of water security on a country by country basis in the region. It examines five key dimensions of water security including household, economic, urban, environmental, and resilience to water-related disaster, and uses indicators and a scaling system to rank the progress of each of the 49 countries under assessment.
The days preceding the summit feature a series of technical workshops, exhibitions, and poster sessions. The Network of Asian River Basin Organizations (NARBO) will conduct its General Meeting from 15-18 May. Many of ADB's river basin project clients are members of NARBO.
The summit is expected to engage heads of state and government from Asia and the Pacific, water-related ministers, local government, and leaders from the private sector, civil society, including students and youth. Focus Area Sessions will be held on 19 May for each key dimension of water security and Thailand's experience with flood management. Heads of state and government will meet in the Leaders Forum on 20 May, chaired by the Prime Minister of Thailand.