China Europe Water Platform

The China Europe Water Platform (CEWP) is a network for water co-operation between European countries (including the EU) with the Chinese Ministry of Water Resources.

The Sponge Cities-project concerns the water resilience of cities and is an exponent of global challenges in the field of water, climate and liveability in urban deltas.

In Europe and China, the necessary experience has been gained in implementing the Sponge City Concept (SCC). The aim of this co-operation is to tackle the common challenges of urban transformation. The project focuses on improving models and assessment frameworks on both the technological and socioeconomic levels.


Together with the United States, China is a priority country in the Rijkswaterstaat International Strategy. Rijkswaterstaat is also fulfilling the co-operation as Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management with China.

The linking of rural and urban water management is receiving increasing attention at Rijkswaterstaat. Moreover, there is the connection with broader environmental themes, liveability and spatial planning that makes the focus area Water and Urbanisation interesting for Rijkswaterstaat.

Through this project, the EU and CEWP aim to:

  • intensify the broader water and climate dialogue with China;
  • strengthen research and innovation;
  • promote the European water sector in China.

The exchange of knowledge in the fields of models and assessment frameworks for SCC implementation makes the project especially interesting for Rijkswaterstaat

Project period

The Sponge Cities project was completed in 2022, but the platform has been prolonged for another 4 years, until 2026.

European programme

The EU Partnership Initiative Programme is a broad, large-scale programme aimed at the EU neighbouring countries and emerging economies. The programme is making a total of 7 million euro available for the CEWP work programme.

Project website

Website CEWP


Rijkswaterstaat is the European lead partner in a consortium with Danish, Swedish and Finnish (government) institutions for the contract with the EU. Under the Grant Contract with the EU, contracts have also been concluded with knowledge institutions (Deltares and IHE for the Netherlands) and agreements have been drawn up with European cities (Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Gothenburg and Turku).

On the Chinese side, there will be direct co-operation with Beijing Water Authorities, the Chinese Academy for Urban Planning and Design and the Changde municipality. The Chinese ministries MWR and MoHURD have final responsibility.