Five lessons for shaping policies and programs to accelerate urban sanitation in Asia: a case study on the Beijing Gaobeidian wastewater treatment plant
In Asia, where rapid urbanization is occurring, inadequate water and sanitation services are a problem due to insufficient investment. Asia’s urbanization rate has risen from 32.8% in 1991 to 51.1% in 2020, and more than half of the world’s urban population already lives in Asia. The Beijing Gaobeidian Wastewater Treatment Plant (Phase I) in the People’s Republic of China, financed by a Japanese official development assistance loan, offers lessons for shaping policies and programs to accelerate urban sanitation in Asia. Making effective use of long-term foreign loans and technical cooperation filled gaps in finance, technology, and experience. Developing future leadership through project implementation while effectively utilizing training was crucial for sustainable development of the sanitation sector. Introducing and gradually increasing wastewater tariffs in line with institutional reforms expanded investment in sanitation. Embodying the policies and plans of the central government at the local level accelerated urban sanitation.