The twin island state and the Republic of Malta are now allies, following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding a few days ago.
Prime Minister Gaston Browne, met with Robert Abela, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Malta at the United Nations last week to sign the MoU to strengthen technical cooperation between the two countries.
The MoU, according to reports aims to establish a capacity-building program for Strategy and Technical personnel at the Antigua and Barbuda Public Utilities Authority (APUA).
The program will comprise a Pilot Leakage Management Project in isolated water supply zones within the municipal water distribution network.
“This should result in the development of a holistic and comprehensive leakage Identification, Management, and Control strategy. By this signed MoU, the Government of Malta will provide support for training visits,” a statement from the Director General of Communications stated.
Before the official signing of the MoU, both leaders candidly exchanged best practices for Water Management Strategies to include production, recycling, and conservation. Prime Minister Abela openly shared Malta’s experience in water infrastructure development to increase production and improve distribution.
From his experience, PM Browne welcomed his solutions and iterated that Antigua and Barbuda experience significant challenges in the water supply that he is eager to address.
“If left unattended, the repercussion would be too great. It would mean a plummet in food production and an uptick in food prices that are exacerbated by global crises such as climate change, pandemics, and the Russia-Ukraine war”, said PM Browne.
After the signing, the leaders re-engaged on a plethora of issues that Small Island Development States (SIDS) face.
This includes structural vulnerabilities, lack of scale economies, climate change, and decline in the economy owning to global risks and threats.
Despite these perilous threats to SIDS, Prime Minister Browne concluded the talks on a positive note by emphasizing SIDS’ fortitude and resilience, forging partnerships on the international platform.