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Opening remarks by Dr Mohamed Ait-Kadi, GWP Technical Committee Chair
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Opening remarks by Dr Mohamed Ait-Kadi, GWP Technical Committee Chair

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  • 1. Workshop on Climate Change, Food, and Water Security Opening Remarks by Mohamed AITKADI, Chair, GWP Technical Committee February 24, 2011Without repeating the concept note, allow me to briefly say that I am very pleased that thisworkshop, which is the first of a series that we intend to organize in other regions, takesplace in South Asia where the ever-expanding water demand of growing economies andpopulations, combined with the impacts of climate change are already making waterinsecurity a reality, with implications for food and livelihood security. But at the same time, Iam convinced that this region has the potential to lead the way in taking a more strategicand integrated approach to the threats and opportunities latent in the climate change-foodand water security nexus.Our aim in this workshop is to promote a discussion of the prospects for more effectivelyharnessing global and regional knowledge. Our hope is that the fruits of this discussion willcontribute to the understanding and management of the interactions among these issuesand what’s more, that this knowledge will lead to joint action and help shape the regionalagenda on water security.Climate change, food and water security are increasingly tightly interconnected in ways thatextend well beyond national borders. The associated shocks and vulnerabilities are trulyglobal and regional even if impacts and response can still differ at local level. We will notsolve these problems by addressing them one by one, country by country or basin by basin.At this critical juncture, if we are to meet future challenges with effective solutions andsufficient levels of preparedness, we need to improve understanding of these issues atregional levels and to develop more coordinated responses.There is still vast, unexploited scope to pool knowledge and understanding ofinterconnected challenges and to design collaborative regional strategies. For this purpose, itis important to have a neutral and creative space where multiple stakeholders can cometogether in an atmosphere of trust. The Global Water Partnership proposed regionalplatform is meant to be such a space!I sincerely hope that the work that we do here together and the knowledge and insights thatwill be shared during this 2-day workshop will contribute to galvanizing the desired actionand cooperation in South Asia.Thank you for your attention

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