Australia-Vietnam Water Utility Improvement Program

Background

Access to clean drinking water and safe disposal of wastewater are two of the major issues facing developing countries today. Working towards excellence in the water utility sector is a highly effective way for developing countries to strive towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6.

In 2016, the Australian Water Association (AWA) received a request from the Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Vice Minister of Construction and the CEO of the Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Association (VWSA) for capacity development of Vietnamese water utilities through establishment of twinning relationships with utilities from Australia. Specific interest was identified in the areas of asset management, water technology, operator accreditation, minimizing non-revenue water, water safety plans, business management and public-private partnerships.

Between 2016 to 2019, the Australian Water Partnership (AWP) supported the Australian Water Association (AWA) to facilitate water utility twinning relationships between five Vietnamese and five Australian water utilities.

Objectives

The Water Utility Improvement Program (WUIP) takes forward water reform objectives of the Australian and Vietnam Government in their efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 6 aimed at achieving access to water and sanitation for all. Water professionals in Vietnam will gain access to Australian expertise in delivering safe and reliable water, wastewater and drainage services. The capacity of individuals and organisations to implement water reform objectives will be nurtured through training programs and hands-on assistance with a focus on asset management, advanced water technology, minimising non- revenue water, operationalising water safety plans, supply/demand planning, business management, and integrated information systems.

Outcomes

Over the three-year period mutually beneficial relationships were formed and capacity developed within both the Vietnamese and Australian twins. The WUIP has shown progress towards achievement of AWP impacts including improved water planning through transfer of water safety planning approaches; and enhanced performance and effectiveness of water utilities in a range of areas including asset management, non-revenue water, engineering design, human resource management, business strategy and Public-Private Partnerships.

Whilst the WUIP was not commercially geared, there has also been commercial opportunities emerge for Australian companies including for design engineers, laboratory analysis companies, technology providers and academic institutions.

By the numbers

  • 5 ongoing twinning relationships established between Australian and Vietnamese utilities
  • 39 Vietnamese utility staff worked closely with 61 Australian utility staff
  • 27 tools adopted by Vietnamese utilities
  • Developed capacity of 1,036 Vietnam water utility staff
  • Improved delivery of water services for over 10,681,765 water utility customers
  • Over 110 Vietnamese water utilities provided training materials and informed of WUIP outcomes

For more information, see the AWP Monitoring & Evaluation Report 2015-18

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Program Lead

Paul Smith
Australian Water Association

REGION

South-East Asia

COUNTRY

ORIGIN OF DEMAND

Government of Vietnam

STATUS

Complete (Nov 2016 – Jun 2019)

INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS

AUSTRALIAN PARTNERS