EghtesadOnline: French and German groups on Wednesday signed broad-ranging agreements on collaboration with Iran's water industry.
France Water Group, a consortium of French companies operating in the water industry, signed a memorandum of understanding with the Iranian Association of Water and Wastewater Experts on using the French group's expertise and know-how across the water and wastewater sectors, Financial Tribune reported.
Qanbarali Rajabi, managing director of IAWWE, whose association bridges the gap between private domestic companies and foreign enterprises, said the agreement is an effort to help alleviate the country's water woes, the Iranian Energy Ministry's news portal said.
"Lack of potable water is a global challenge that is shaping a new phase of collaboration between Iran and France," Rajabi said in the signing ceremony at the International Water and Wastewater Exhibition in Tehran.
Grappling with increasingly dwindling water resources, persistent drought and high levels of consumption, the Iranian government is stepping up efforts to modernize the country's dilapidated water supply network, build new treatment facilities and employ cutting-edge irrigation systems to curb the excessive use of water.
The state-owned National Water and Wastewater Engineering Company also signed a preliminary agreement with the German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste, also known as DWA, on Wednesday.
The agreement will pave the way for establishing a training center for water and wastewater industry in the city of Isfahan, one of Iran's largest drought-affected cities.
DWA will finance 50% of the construction costs of the training center slated to start operations in the next fiscal year that starts on March 21, 2018, said Hamidreza Janbaz, chief executive officer of the Iranian company.
Iran is located in one of the most water-stressed regions in the world. Average annual rainfall is around 250 millimeters per year, or almost one-fourth of average global precipitation, as the country continues to grapple with perennial drought that has left large swathes of land barren.
The country's water security is also threatened by a self-destructive habit of overconsumption that seems to be implacable despite warnings and wakeup calls of officials and experts. According to statistics, Iran’s water recycling in agriculture is below 50%. Almost 90% of the scarce water resources are consumed by the agriculture sector.