Special Envoy for Water
About the Special water Envoy
The Water Envoy is appointed by the Dutch Cabinet and reports directly to the ministers. In his role as thematic ambassador, the Water Envoy strengthens the Dutch international water ambition at home and abroad for the entire sector and, on behalf of and for, the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Infrastructure and Water Management, Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, and Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality.
Through his water and economic diplomacy, he connects a close network in the Netherlands with a strong and well maintained international network. He works closely with our Embassies, Consulates and Permanent Representations. The Water Envoy operates across the full spectrum of the water sector and builds lasting relationships with the most important partners, relevant government agencies, knowledge institutions, umbrella organisations, coordinating and representative bodies, businesses, and social organisations. Among the last are the World Bank, United Nations, EU and OECD. He also makes connections with other relevant top sectors such as energy, agriculture, and the creative industry.
- The Water Envoy participates in international water meetings, multilateral fora and IFIs, if required, representing ministers at these events.
- The Water Envoy’s core objectives are to create awareness and build coalitions, stimulate response and preparedness, work on water diplomacy, and boost innovation.
Ambassador for Water
Henk Ovink was appointed by the Cabinet of the Netherlands as the first Special Envoy for International Water Affairs in 2015. As the Ambassador for Water, he is responsible for advocating water awareness around the world, focusing on building institutional capacity and coalitions among governments, multilateral organisations, the private sector and NGOs to address the world’s pressing water needs and help initiate transformative interventions.