Institutional Reform in Kazakhstan when implementing IWRM plan

Posted: 2010-06-17

With support from GWP and UNDP the Kazakhstan government has drafted an IWRM plan and established river basin councils, realizing that management problems could be helped off by IWRM.

The project, which was carried out during three years, aimed at strengthening water management organizations and instituting the practice of IWRM. Before the final draft was approved there was a long process with several stakeholder’s forums to present and obtain feedback on the work plan.

Kazakhstan is not really facing water resources problems, rather what Kazakhstan has been struggling with is a management problem. In Kazakhstan the agricultural sector consumes 78 % of the country's total water supply and a significant amount is lost through inefficient water use. A decade of budget and staffing cuts have had dramatic effects on the authorities’ ability to manage water. Even though organizational reforms in the water management sector were recognized at high political level, no actual reforms took place. Thanks to the IWRM planning process, in December 2008 the IWRM Plan was endorsed by the Kazakhstan cabinet, and the River Basin Councils now have a stronger position to implement the national water policy.

A longer summary and full case study is available at the GWP ToolBox.

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