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OSCE approves water governance resolution

Malta's first ever resolution to be approved

Godfrey Farrugia sponsored the resolution together with MPs Rosianne Cutajar (head of delegation) and Emanuel Mallia.

Godfrey Farrugia sponsored the resolution together with MPs Rosianne Cutajar (head of delegation) and Emanuel Mallia.

European MPs meeting in the Belorussian capital Minsk have unanimously backed Malta’s call for greater trans-border cooperation to safeguard scarce drinking water resources. As a result, the issue will be on the agenda of the ministerial council of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe later on this year.

The subject was brought to the fore on the initiative of Democratic Party MP Godfrey Farrugia who sponsored a resolution during the OSCE’s Parliamentary Assembly. The Maltese delegation was headed by Labour MP Rosianne Cutajar and also included MP Emanuel Mallia. 

Co-sponsored by 26 MPs hailing from 19 countries including the assembly’s president Christine Muttonen, it was Malta’s first ever resolution to be approved. A total of 15 resolutions were approved during the 26th annual session which comes to an end today. While expressing his satisfaction for the backing received, Dr Farrugia told The Sunday Times of Malta that months of lobbying behind the scenes would have gone down the drain had he not been re-elected in the June 3 general election.

“In that case, the resolution would still have been presented but Malta’s ownership would have been lost,” he said.

Titled ‘Drinking Water: Fostering co-operation to protect scarce resources adversely affected by climate change’, the resolution was presented to the General Committee on Economic Affairs, Technology and Environment on Friday.

In his address Dr Farrugia stressed that this issue was closely linked to a nation’s economic prosperity and health index.  He called for more robust cooperation between states to protect and manage surface and transit water as well as aquifers from contaminants and the impact of human activity.

The MP called for more initiatives to recycle wastewater on the lines of Malta’s efforts in favour of the construction of water polishing plants from which the agricultural sector is set to benefit.

He urged all participating states to give more weight to water governance when drafting their green economy strategy.

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