Working in Solidarity, Focusing on Substance

The 2006 Joint Declaration captures the tremendous spirit of friendship, collaboration and commitment that echoed throughout the Asia-Pacific region during the months and years leading up the 4th World Water Forum. In calling for the creation of the APWF that would work “in complete solidarity“, water ministers, international organisations and stakeholders from across the region sought to create a mechanism through which they could work together, effectively and cohesively, in order to implement solutions to the regions’ most pressing water challenges. Since its inception, the APWF has focused on matters of substance by fostering activities under each of the five Key Result Areas and by seeking commitments at the highest political levels in order to achieve progress under each of the three Priority Themes. After all, the goal of the APWF is not to create an additional bureaucracy or a new administration, but to “contribute to sustainable water management in order to achieve the MDGs in Asia and the Pacific by capitalizing on the region’s diversity and rich history of experience in dealing with water as a fundamental part of the human existence.” » RULES AND PROCEDURES (As of February 22, 2007)


The governance structure for APWF will be based on a highly participatory bottom-up approach, supported by a light managerial and administrative structure responsible for coordinating APWF activities. All decisions of the APWF and the Governing Council shall be made by consensus. To the extent possible, all groups or committees established by the APWF shall be inclusive and open to any interested members who may wish to participate.


The strategic direction of the APWF will be guided by the President of the APWF, Mr. Yoshiro Mori, President of the Japan Water Forum.

Governing Council

The Governing Council is to be kept small. It currently consists of the Chair, Mr. Tommy Koh, Ambassador- At-Large of Singapore, and the two Vice-Chairs, Ms. Erna Witoelar, the UN Special Ambassador for Millennium Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific, and Mr. Ravi Narayanan, the former Chief Executive of WaterAid. They have the power to make decisions, which are made by consensus. The meetings of the Governing Council are to be open and inclusive. Therefore, the leaders of the three Priority Themes; the leaders of the five KRAs; the five sub-regional coordinators may attend the meetings. Any other interested members may also attend these meetings as observers.


The Japan Water Forum (JWF) will take on the responsibility of hosting and staffing the Secretariat of the APWF, whose role will be to execute the APWF’s work plan, to manage the central database and website, to coordinate network services, and to convene the meetings of the Governing Council.  

Sub-regional Coordinators

The Sub-regional Coordinators are the organizations in the five sub-regions that represented the Asia-Pacific during the preparatory process leading up to the 4th World Water forum and who prepared the Regional Document that lead to the Ministerial Declaration and, ultimately, to the creation of the APWF. The Coordinators will be called upon for assistance in linking the various activities undertaken in the context of the five KRA‘s and the three Priority Themes with stakeholders in their Sub-region, from the ground level through that of government leaders.

Lead Organizations

There are two types of Lead Organizations involved in the APWF: those leading activities under the five KRAs; and those guiding progress under the three Priority Themes. Like the Sub-regional coordinators, both types of Lead Organizations shall operate on a voluntary basis and must be willing and able to commit the resources necessary to cover their active participation. They must also be part of a wide network of local practitioners, with access to decision-makers, and are thus able to build linkages between the grass roots and governmental levels.

Member Organizations

The APWF membership will be open to various groups in order to cover a broad and diverse constituency willing to work together to achieve water for all. There are five categories in the APWF membership: 1) national, regional, and provincial agencies which are in charge of water provision / policy development/ management, 2) institutions and universities which contribute knowledge to address water issues, 3) CSOs and communities which are responsible for water provision/advocacy, 4) private companies/ corporations which contribute to water, including through corporate social responsibility activities, and 5) media institutions which support the objectives of the APWF.


(As of February 22, 2007)



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