An excellent opportunity to collaborate with water professionals in Vietnam and globally.
The 8th VietWater Expo and Forum was held in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, from 9-11 November 2016. Representing the Global Water Institute, Dr Peter Kolvalsky, Dr An Ninh Pham and Professor Nick Schofield from UNSW attended as part of an Australian delegation organised by the Australian Water Association (AWA).
VietWater is the country's largest water event, attracting over 400 exhibitors from 41 countries, representing all facets of the water and energy sectors including wastewater treatment, water supply, sewerage, energy saving and renewable energy. The exhibition saw over 10,000 industry attendees and the AWA Pavilion, which included GWI, won the 'best at show' award.
While Vietnam has made good progress towards meeting its Sustainable Development Goals, it is facing significant water issues and is looking to other countries with proven water expertise, such as Australia, to assist with combating these issues – particularly in the areas of water supply, sanitation and wastewater treatment.
The Australian delegation to Vietwater16 was the largest delegation to ever travel to Vietnam and included 72 Australian water experts from Government, R&D, private sector and five Australian water utilities already involved in knowledge-sharing programs with Vietnamese water companies.
Professor Nick Schofield, Director of the Global Water Institute, said that VietWater provided an excellent opportunity to collaborate with water professionals in Vietnam and globally.
"Vietnam's existing water issues have been amplified recently due to unexpected droughts and storms—making the need to accelerate solutions all the more urgent. GWI has some of the best water experts both nationally and globally, and we hope that this expertise, and the relationships we have built, can contribute to ensuring a sustainable future for Vietnam's water sector."
In addition to the mammoth exhibition, over 350 Vietnamese water professionals attended workshops organised by Australian organisations throughout the week, on the topics of water quality and technology, climate change and salinisation, private sector participation and knowledge exchange. Peter Kovalsky also gave a well-received presentation on water treatment and technology.
GWI attendees took the opportunity to meet with other university representatives and water professionals already working in Vietnam – providing an insightful understanding of the experiences, lessons, opportunities and challenges of doing business locally.
The next VietWater event is planned for 8-10 November 2017.