Jakarta, Indonesia

18 May 2022

Secretary-General's message to the Sanitation and Water For All Sector Ministers' Meeting

I am pleased to send my greetings to the Sanitation and Water for All’s 2022 Sector Ministers’ Meeting.

Sanitation and water go to the heart of sustainable development and shaping a better, healthier, fairer world for all.

Tragically, the world is failing to fulfill this basic need for billions of people.

Over one in three people on earth – 2.2 billion people – lack access to safely managed drinking water, including 884 million who live without any basic drinking water services at all. About 4.2 billion people lack access to safely managed sanitation – and an estimated three billion people live without basic handwashing facilities.

Water and sanitation must be considered basic human rights for all people, no matter who they are or where they live. They are also a cornerstone of public health systems – highlighted so tragically by the COVID-19 pandemic – which is why I continue to call for water and sanitation to be available in all health care facilities by 2030.

Your discussions, which span governments, sectors and constituency groups, are critical to generating solidarity and much needed action in this vital area.

Together, we can build a better world in which we deliver on the promise of sanitation and water for all.