Abang Johari (second left) receives a souvenir from MWA president Mohmad Asari Daud during a courtesy visit to the premier’s office at Wisma Bapa Malaysia yesterday. At left is Julaihi. – Information Department photo

KUCHING (July 14): Kuching city is in the final stage of selection to host the International Water Congress (IWC) in 2028 said Datuk Julaihi Narawi.

The Minister of Utility and Telecommunication said the selection process for which city will host the congress has entered its final stages and currently, the only two cities left in the running are Kuching and Sao Paulo, Brazil.

“Based on the bidding done by the Malaysian Water Association (MWA), we have a chance because we are in the final stages of the selection between Kuching, Sarawak as a representative from Malaysia and Sao Paulo, Brazil.

“It means that one of these cities will be chosen to host the International Water Congress in 2028,” said Julaihi who was met shortly after his courtesy visit on Sarawak Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg at Wisma Bapa Malaysia yesterday.

Also present during the visit was a delegation from the International Water Association (IWA) based in London, the MWA and the Sarawak Branch of Malaysian Water Association.

MWA recently proposed Kuching to IWA to host the congress in 2028 and IWA executive director Prof Kala Vairavamoorthy has been here for the past few days to assess Sarawak’s capability and suitability in hosting the congress.

Julaihi said the Premier of Sarawak has expressed Sarawak’s serious intent and readiness, especially in terms of the location proposed.

“The Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) is the main choice and at the same time, the Sarawak Government also has plans to build BCCK 2 which is expected to be completed in 2026.

“It means that if the congress takes place in 2028, we will be able to accommodate more than 10,000 delegates from 82 to 100 countries,” said Julaihi.