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Statement by: Libya
20 Apr 2005

The Permanent Mission of the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
to the United Nation - New York
Statement by
His Excellency Dr.Taher E. Jehaimi
Secretary of the General People's Committee for Planning
The United Nations Committee
on Sustainable Developement
New York, 20 April 2005
Mr. President,
Distinguished Members of Delegations,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
At the outset, I wish to convey to you my most sincere thanks and
appreciation for giving me the opportunity to address your esteemed
committee, and to let you know, that I highly value the tireless efforts you
and the members of the bureau are exerting to make the workings of this
Session a success and to achieve the best desired results.
Mr. President,
The Thirteenth Session of the Committee on Sustainable Development
deals with subjects of extreme importance relating to issues of water,
sanitation and human settlements, which, overall, are considered
fundamental elements for the achievement of sustainable development.
This, requires a united and joint effort between governments, civil society
organizations and development agencies, accompanied by strong and
coordinated partnerships.
Mr. President,
Emanating from the Johannesburg Declaration and the plan of
implementation for Sustainable Development, and the resolve and
determination expressed in their contents, reached by consensus, to
strengthen and deepen the roots of sustainable development in the economic,
social and environmental dimensions on the various local, national, regional
and global levels, we affirm our commitment to achieving these goals, to
follow-up on the implementation process, and to encourage further
coordination and cooperation within a cohesive framework, with support
from the United Nations System, and the international organizations
specialized in designing strategies for sustainable development, at the
country level, to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, and other
development goals, agreed upon internationally.
Mr. President,
Water and Sanitation are core issues in order to achieve sustainable
development and reduce the intensity of poverty in the developing countries.
We, therefore, affirm our adherence to the full implementation of the
commitments that were made at the World Summit on Sustainable
Development, and in particular, the commitment to reduce by 2015, by one
half, the number of those who do not have access to safe drinking water, or
cannot afford it, as well as the number of those who lack the basic sanitary
facilities. We call upon, and appeal to, all international financial institutions
and donor countries, to increase their assistance for projects that provide
potable water and sanitation services for human settlements in the different
cities and rural areas of developing countries.
The developing countries, and in particular, the least developed
among them, cannot in any way possible undertake projects related to water,
sanitary facilities and human settlements, unless they receive financial and
technological assistance from the donor countries, since these projects cost
enormous amounts of money to obtain the best results, in order to have
access to sanitation services, deliver potable water, and raise the standards of
the human settlements.
Mr. President,
In this respect, we also affirm our support to the contents of the Dakar
Declaration, issued by (the Global WASH Forum) which was convened in
Dakar, Senegal from the period 29 November to 3 December 2004, and the
recommendations issued by the Forum.
Mr. President,
Allow me to highlight what has been accomplished in Libya in the
fields of water, sanitation and human settlements:
During the last thirty five years, and to be exact, since the dawning of
the Great 1" of September Revolution, Libya has witnessed social and
economical transformations in different areas, chief among which was the
utmost concern given to the provision of water and sanitation services to
Libyan cities and villages. Over 1500 wells of drinking water were
equipped to provide water, thousands of kilometers of main and subsidiary
water networks were constructed (almost 35 thousand kilometers).
Thousands of reservoirs, and hundreds of pumping stations were built.
Attention has also been paid to improving the quality of water through
treatment as required, as well as utilizing seawater to provide water supplies
to some cities in the Jamahiriya, using desalination plants that were started
in the early seventies of the last century.
All these efforts culminated in the implementation of the Great Man-
Made River Project, which aims, when all its phases are completed, to
transport over 2 billion cubic meters of fresh water per year from large
aquifers in the south of the country to the north, where most of the
population and economic activities are centered, through a network of heavy
duty reinforced concrete pipes, with a diameter of 4 meters, and extending
over a distance of 4000 kilometers.
In the field of sanitation, thousands of kilometers of sewage collection
and networks were built, estimated to measure over 7500 kilometers, and
hundreds of relay and pumping stations, as well as tens of treatment stations,
were built, with a view to reuse treated sewage water, mainly for agricultural
purposes. Furthermore, the Jamahiriya was among the pioneer countries on
the regional level to apply the technologies of treatment of sewage water, as
treatment stations have been in operation for over three decades.
Complementing these efforts, Libya started recently implementing a
national program to complete building its infra-structure facilities in the
fields of water and, sanitation in all cities and urban centers, as well as to
rehabilitate the existing ones, with a view to improving services and
increasing the percentage of the population receiving potable water from the
general networks, from the current 84% to 100% in the near future.
This program also aims to have complete coverage of sewer services
within urban areas through the general networks. In this regard, it is worth
noting that the current percentage of the population that have sewage
facilities reaches 97%, and the number of those linked to the public sewage
networks is almost 48%.
Libya has adopted this ambitious program at a cost of about six billion
U.S. dollars, and is expected to be completed during the next seven years.
What has been accomplished in Libya in the area of water and sanitation
clearly indicates that Libya has actually accomplished many of the
Millennium Development Goals, and in fact, went beyond them.
Geographically, Libya is characterized by its vast area and a disparity
in the distribution of the population between urban and rural areas, with the
coastal areas considered more likely to witness a population growth.
Reducing this disparity in the distribution of the population has been taken
into consideration through long term physical planning, 2000-2025.
The development plans of the last three decades reflect special
emphasis on improving services, represented in the_construction of roads,
means of transportation and communications, generation and distribution of
electrical power, improving health and educational services, and realizing
the Great Man-Made River Project. These achievements contributed to
narrowing the gap between the different areas, and led to an equitable
distribution of public services, with emphasis on the least developed areas.
These measures attained the following results:
l. A more equitable distribution of infrastructure and social services,
including the provision of water, sanitation facilities, education and
health services, among the various areas.
A reduction in the density of the population in big cities, in favor of
other coastal areas, and the interior.
Thank you, Mr. President,
Ladies and Gentlemen, for your attention

United Nations