Ministers Declare Support for Drin Basin Dialogue

Posted: 2011-05-24

On April 18, 2011, Ministers issued a Declaration expressing their support for the continuation and enhancement of the Drin Dialogue with the assistance of GWP Mediterranean and the U.N. Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), and for the preparation of the Shared Vision for the management of the Drin Basin.

The Ministers, meeting in Ohrid in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, also conveyed their intention for the Shared Vision to be negotiated and potentially signed at the Consultation Meeting at the Transboundary level planned for October 2011. The Declaration was adopted by the Ministers and high level representatives of Albania, FYR Macedonia, Greece and Kosovo.

The Drin Dialogue is a structured consultation process conducted within the frameworks of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Water Convention and the Petersberg Phase II / Athens Declaration Process. It aims to establish a shared vision for the management of the extended Drin Basin, including Albania, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Greece, Kosovo (UN administered territory under UN Security Council resolution 1244) and Montenegro. As a process, the Dialogue contributes directly to and is part of the Mediterranean Component of the EU Water Initiative and of the GEF MedPartnership.

Within the Dialogue, the Albanian National Consultation Meeting and the Drin Core Group Meeting were organized 5-6 April 2011 in Tirana, Albania, with the support and collaboration of UNECE, GWP Mediterranean and the MIO-ECSDE and with the financial support of the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.

The Albanian National Consultation Meeting brought together more than 120 representatives of the major stakeholder groups of the Drin Basin extending in Albania to explore main challenges and propose actions towards the sustainable management of the Drin Basin. The meeting was opened by H.E Mr. Fatmir Mediu, Minister of Environment, Forests and Water Administration, Albania, H.E. Mr. Nexhati Jakupi, Minister of Environment and Physical Planning, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, H.E. Mr. Tarzan Milosevic, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management, Montenegro, H.E. Mr. Dardan Gashi, Minister of Environment and Spatial Planning, Kosovo (UN administered territory under UN Security Council resolution 1244) expressing their firm commitment to cooperate for the joint management of the Drin Basin.

The Drin Core Group, an informal body of coordination among the riparians that was formed for the needs of the Dialogue, discussed developments and agreed on the preparation of a Declaration on the management of the extended Drin Basin. The Declaration was adopted on April 18.


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