Few African nations 'on track to meet water goals'
30 November 2009
Few African nations are currently on track to reach the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals for water, an Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (AICD) has noted.
With about five years to go until the target deadline of 2015, less than 60 per cent of the population on the continent have access to drinking water.
The study highlighted the unique challenges the region faces in this area.
"High hydro-climatic variability, inadequate storage, rising demand and lack of transboundary cooperation undermine the African water sector," it pointed out.
The report called attention to the need for more programmes to be developed on a regional level to properly exploit the 60 transnational rivers.
It noted the importance of large-scale infrastructure to manage water use and avoid conflicts.
The AICD revealed that over the last 40 years, a fraction of the new irrigation developed in China and India was developed in Africa - four million hectares as opposed to 25 and 32 million, respectively.