On November 19, H. E. E Jingping, Minister of Water Resources met with H. E. François de Rugy, French Minister of State and Minister for Ecology and Inclusive Transition and other delegates in Beijing. Both sides exchanged views on strengthening cooperation between the two countries in the field of water resources and signed a cooperative agreement.
E Jingping extended welcome to the delegation headed by François de Rugy, and expressed gratitude to the French counterparts for their long-term active participation in and vigorous promotion of Sino-French water cooperation.
E Jingping highlighted the most prominent water challenge in China used to be flood and drought disasters. However, along with development of economy and society, other water issues such as water shortage, ecological deterioration and water environment pollution have become increasingly prominent. The water departments are under increasing pressure to address these new challenges. At present and in the near future, China will focus its efforts on four major water issues mentioned.
E Jingping pointed out that the Sino-French water cooperation was commendable and fruitful. Since the signing of the water resources cooperative agreement in 2009, the two parties have carried out abundant exchanges and cooperative activities in the respects of water resources management, integrated river basin management, personnel training and cooperation under the framework of the China-Europe Water Platform. China is willing to learn experiences and best practices from France, regarding integrated river basin management, water ecological restoration, river and lake management, and share its experiences in water project planning, design, construction and management with France. It is expected that the water departments of China and France would continue to maintain close communication and good cooperation, implement the newly signed cooperative agreement, and boost Sino-French water cooperation to a higher level.
François de Rugy conveyed his appreciation for China's achievements in water resources management. He noted that water resources were vital and indispensable natural resources to all countries. Under the impact of global climate change and demand of socio-economic development, water resources has become increasingly significant. Like China, France attaches great importance to water resources management. China and France have established a partnership of long-term, friendly, constructive and cooperative in the water sector. He hoped that under this framework of the newly signed cooperative agreement, the two parties will continue to share water resources management experiences, implement the Haihe Basin Project effectively, and upscale exchanges with other river basins in China, so as to further deepen Sino-French water cooperation.
After the meeting, E Jingping and François de Rugy signed the Agreement on Cooperation between the Ministry of Water Resources of the People's Republic of China and the Ministry for Ecology and Inclusive Transition of the French Republic.