The MoU was signed in the presence of the French Ambassador, Aurélien Lechevallier, and French consul-general Laurent Alberti. On behalf of the City of Cape Town, in attendance were Executive Mayor Alderman Dan Plato, the Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Waste Alderman Xanthea Limberg and Mike Webster, Executive Director of the Directorate of Water and Waste. The MoU is testament to the ongoing partnership between AFD and the City.
Following the unprecedented period of drought that hit the region between 2015 and 2018, the City of Cape Town adopted a new water strategy, "Our Shared Water Future", in May 2019 to increase the resilience and sustainability of the metropolitan municipality. This strategy is structured around five commitments:
- safe access to water for all residents
- wise use of water by users
- reliable and diversified supply
- equitable sharing of the resource within the supply system and
- integrated water management at the local level, developing what’s called a “water-sensitive” city.
In order to implement this strategy, the Water and Sanitation Department has been reorganized into 4 clusters (each led by a Director) . This was done with the support of the AFD and technical assistance from French expert Jean-Pierre Mas, an international specialist in leading change in the water sector.
An action plan was also adopted in May 2020, and going forward AFD is supporting the implementation of a transversal programme on financial sustainability of water and sanitation services. AFD has committed 500 000 euros to support the following: analysis of the service revenue structure (cost of service, long term financial projections, optimization of the tariff model and subsidies), financing strategy, and review of the investment master plan.