EU Foreign Affairs Council has approved conclusions on the water in the EU’s external action, which represents an important milestone in EU water diplomacy and an important achievement of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU.

The Council approved conclusions highlighting the strategic importance of water, in particular for sustainable development, poverty reduction, food and nutrition security, human development, climate action, environmental protection, biodiversity and ecosystem preservation, humanitarian action, peace and stability, and the importance of water as a human right.

The conclusions reaffirm the EU’s diplomatic engagement on water, especially transboundary water cooperation, as a tool for peace, security and stability. The conclusions call for further implementation in this regard and for an increase in synergies between water, climate and energy diplomacy.

The Council is concerned that the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 – ‘Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all’ remains severely off-track and under-financed. Therefore, the Council calls for the issue of water to be given increased emphasis in the EU’s external action and in the UN agendas, in line with the SDG 6 Global Acceleration Framework.

To this end, the EU welcomes the UN 2023 Water Conference as an opportunity to mobilise all stakeholders and sectors and stresses the need for concrete outcomes.

“The conclusions on water in the EU’s external action represent an important milestone in meeting the EU’s water diplomacy targets and in making progress under the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” emphasised Slovenian State Secretary Stanislav Raščan.

Water in the EU’s external action is the main priority of the Slovenian Presidency in the field of development cooperation.

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