The Department of Water Resources (DoWR), representing the Government of Vanuatu and UNELCO Engie have received eight Pacific Water and Wastewater Association (PWWA) awards this year.

The DoWR was awarded the Best Utility Overall in the Pacific, Best Coverage, Best Cost Recovery, Best Technical Performance, Best Most Improved Water Utility, Best Utility in Group and runner-up of Best Customer Service.

UNELCO Engie won the Best Technical Permanence in its grouping. UNELCO also received a special award for second top display at the PWWA Expo.

Those awards were given out during the closing of the 12th PWWA Conference and Expo and 5th Wastewater Ministerial Forum which was held this week.

Vanuatu was the host of this year's PWWA Conference and Forum, which was attended by Prime Minister, Charlot Salwai and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ralph Regenvanu. 

The Director of Water Resources, Erickson Sammy, said the awards recognise how the department operates water systems in Luganville, Lakatoro on Malekula and Lenakel (Tanna). 

"The 'Best Utility Overall 2019' does not mean that we are perfect but it recognises how the department try its best to provide safe and reliable services to its customers or the people," he said.

The DoWR has previously won the Best Cost Recovery, Best Performing Utility and Best Water Coverage. 

Vanuatu took four awards and UNELCO took one during last year's event in New Caledonia.

The awards were selected by PWWA Board based on data collected from the PWWA member countries and water utilities. 

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