Pureco Africa in Kigali

Pureco Africa in Kigali

Innovative Hungarian water industry technologies to improve living conditions in developing countries - at the "Water and Development" Congress of the International Water Association (IWA) in Kigali (Rwanda). HWP invited the excellence of the international, European and African water industry to a panel discussion in the framework of an independent workshop. Pureco was also represented.

The experience of recent years has shown that Hungary can contribute quickly and effectively to improving the living conditions of developing countries with its exportable knowledge and affordable, sustainable drinking water and wastewater treatment technologies. 

Global water challenges
Although almost three-quarters of our Earth is covered by water, less than 3% is fresh water and only 1% is easily accessible. Global water demand has more than doubled since 1960 and is projected to increase by another 20-25% by 2050. In practice, it means that at least 5 billion people will not have adequate access to water. Already today, 750 million people live without safe water and 2.5 billion do not have access to sanitation services. 85% of the world's wastewater is returned to nature without treatment, severely damaging surface and groundwater, causing 6-8 million deaths yearly from water-related diseases.

Dr Károly Kovács, Chairman of the HWP, CEO of Pureco Ltd.

International Dialogue
However, to achieve a satisfactory water supply and sewage disposal and provide the necessary infrastructure, at least 22,600 billion dollars would be needed by 2050, which cannot be achieved even with global efforts. In developing countries, these challenges can be answered by innovative, quick solutions that are also attractive to private investors, and at the same time affordable technologies.

The international professional dialogue concentrates on the water-related needs of low- and middle-income countries focused on these problems. The four-day international congress organized by the International Water Association (IWA) was held in the spirit of achieving a water-conscious future. Participants from almost all countries of the world came to the event, and more than three hundred professional excellences shared their experiences in the nearly one hundred plenaries and section meetings.

A large number of diplomatic and professional delegations from Hungary participated in the congress. The professional side of our country was represented by the Hungarian Water Partnership (HWP). Pureco Ltd., a member of HWP, also participated in this special event. HWP was not only present but organized a workshop on sustainable and financeable water developments, given that technological developments in the Hungarian water industry play an increasingly important role in solving drinking water and wastewater problems in the developing world.

Participants of the  HWP Workshop 

Hungarian technologies for overcoming the water crisis in the developing world 
It was mentioned in almost every section of the IWA congress, that the water crisis due to the growth of population and urbanization, the limitation of water resources, and the isolation of rural settlements are waiting for an immediate solution. But the only possible way to help people effectively and quickly  - particularly those living in developing countries - to have access to healthy, clean drinking water and proper wastewater treatment, is if these water industry developments are implemented in cost-effective, affordable and attractive investment forms for private capital.

Hungary has been actively present in Africa since 2019 with the water expertise of the member companies of the Hungarian Water Partnership. Pureco Ltd. has implemented projects for the treatment of wastewater in unsanitary settlements using Septopure technology (in the towns of Kumasi, Takoradi, Tamale, Ghana), and Puraset Ltd., a member of the Pureco Group, has assisted in the treatment of drinking water in rural settlements using PurAID technology (Akim Wenchi, Ghana).

The Hungarian successes in Africa were also emphasized as a solution at the HWP workshop organized at the IWA congress in Rwanda. Dr. Károly Kovács, president of the Hungarian Water Partnership, CEO of Pureco Ltd., host and moderator of the workshop, highlighted that “the application of decentralized, consumer-close technologies and the appropriate financing of water industry developments, even by private investors, can bring results. He also added that not only expertise is important in such a distant country, but also to understand local conditions, to be able to cooperate and form a partnership, as this will lead to the solution of the global problem.”

Hungarian partnership in Africa
At the highly successful HWP workshop, international (IWA, IAWD), regional (African Water and Sanitation Association - AfWSA), regional (Ghana) and Hungarian (HWP member companies) organizations and business actors discussed solutions to the problems of drinking water and wastewater in the developing world.
Another result of the international congress is that the cooperation between the Hungarian Water Partnership, the European Water Association and the African Water Association (AfWSA) has reached a higher level. From January 2024, the strategic advisory committee of the AfWSA will be strengthened by the president of HWP, Dr. Károly Kovács. This is how cross-continental cooperation becomes complete, which promotes the achievement of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals in the spirit of partnership.

From right to left: Ing. Issahaku Ahmed, plant manager, head, lab-QC Research at SSGL (Ghana), Walter Kling, president of IAWD , Sylvain Usher, president of AfWASA, Bálintt Horváth, CEO of Pureco Ltd.,  András Szabó, leader of the H2O Consortium