Multi-million-tala water, sanitation funding negotiated
The European Union (E.U.) and Samoa have begun negotiations for the continuation of budget support funding for Samoa’s Water and Sanitation sector.
European Union Ambassador-designate to Samoa, Sujiro Seam, said the €20 million(T$59m) support ends next year.
"It comes to an end in 2020, because we are reaching the end of the programming period," he said.
“I have to congratulate the government of Samoa for the very good results because budget support is designed to encourage performance so there is a fixed part to budget support and there is an initiative part which is dependent upon performance.”
He said the country implementing the sector wide approach has to demonstrate and prove that it has met some indicators of performance.
“Samoa has over performed," he said. "We are very happy that the full assistance of €20 million was released for Samoa.
“Now we have to engage on discussion to decide on the next generation of programmes that will start in 2021 and the discussion is just starting now.
“That is part of the message I am conveying to the authorities of Samoa that we have to start discussion on what we want to do next.
“The E.U. continuing to offer support for Samoa will depend on its Government because it is not us at E.U. who will impose on any sector, it is for you to decide what the prime priorities is and we will support that.”
He reiterated that the focus of the E.U. development cooperation with Samoa is on water.
“Supply of quality water is a fundamental aspect in the battle to alleviate poverty and fulfil the Sustainable Development Goals,” he said.
He added that it reduces cases of water borne diseases and improves general living standards, especially for the most vulnerable in society.
“The E.U. focuses on water and sanitation, our assistance take the form of a budget support which means the money is channeled directly to the Government of Samoa to finance its sector wide approach on the water and sanitation."
The Water and Sanitation Sector is under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and it is one of the fourteen sectors in Samoa under the Government Planning initiative.
It is one of the priority sectors as it directly impacts on the quality of life of the people and overall productivity of the population.
The European Union remains as the Water and Sanitation Sector's main development and most trusted partner for over 10 years and continuing, with well over 100 million tala of development assistance to date.
The Water and Sanitation Sector Coordination Division is responsible for the overall coordination of the sector wide programmes: Strengthen sector governance to guide and sustain sector developments; Improve watershed management and reliability of water resource data through integrated water resource management; Increase access and improved provision of reliable, clean and affordable water supply; Improve surveillance of drinking water quality and water borne diseases.