The 15th World Toilet Summit & Expo was held in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia from 27 – 29 October, which hosted more than 750 delegates from 11 countries including the Philippines, Japan, India, Indonesia, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, South Africa, Ivory Coast and Malaysia. The theme of this year’s summit was “Happy Toilet Healthy City” and featured speakers, panelists, and exhibitors from various private organizations, governments, and NGOs.
Just a few of the organizations represented at the summit included Sulabh International, the African Water Association, the International Labor Organization, Water Research Commission, Bhutan Toilet Organization, and 3p Technik.
In order to make the summit relevant to Malaysia’s sanitation landscape, delegates discussed issues including:
- Proper waste management
- Sanitation technology and solutions
- The unique challenges of rural and urban sanitation
- Public hygiene awareness strategies
- The role toilets play in improving tourism
- Gender issues surrounding toilet access.
The summit culminated in the signing of the Kuching Declaration, which pledged commitment to ensure water and sanitation access for all as outlined by the United Nations Sustainable Goals. The declaration stresses the importance of addressing all aspects of the sanitation ecosystem and focuses on the infrastructural, socio-political, and behavioral changes needed to achieve Sustainable Development Goal #6.
Jack Sim, Local Government Minister Datuk Professor Dr Sim Kui Hian, and Kuching City South Mayor Datuk James Chan present the signed Kuching Declaration.
Over 750 delegates fill the conference hall at 15th World Toilet Summit & Expo.
Local Government Minister Datuk Professor Dr Sim Kui Hian, and Kuching City South mayor Datuk James Chan learning about new toilet technologies in the exhibition hall.