PRETORIA-- South Africa and China have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the field of water resources, according to a statement issued by the Department of Water and Sanitation here Wednesday.

The MoU, signed in Beijing on Monday, seeks to establish and reinforce co-operation between South Africa and China on the efficient utilization, management and sustainable development of water resources, including establishing a long-term co-operative relationship on the basis of equity and mutual benefit.

In the agreement, signed by Water and Sanitation Minister Gugile Nkwinti and China's Minister of Water Resources, E Jingping, the two governments mutually agreed on areas of co-operation.

These include enacting and implementation of water policies, laws and regulations; integrated management and utilization of water resources; comprehensive river basin planning; comprehensive utilization of rain water; and planning, designing, construction, operation and maintenance of water-related infrastructures.

The areas of co-operation also include small hydro-power development; hydrology and water resources monitoring; groundwater utilization, protection and management; flood control, drought relief and disaster mitigation; climate change impacts on water resources and counter-measures; co-ordination and co-operation in international water events; training and capacity building; as well as other fields of mutual interests.

The agreement between the two countries came during President Cyril Ramaphosa's State visit to China on Sunday.

In order to ensure that the MoU is implemented accordingly, a Joint Steering Committee (JSC) for Co-operation on Water Resources Management has been established and will be co-chaired by the heads of the competent authorities of the two countries.


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