Consensus on IWRM Implementation in Central Asia

Two back-to-back meetings on water management in Central Asia recently took place in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. GWP representatives Natalia Alexeeva and Vadim Sokolov were invited to the regional workshop “Integrated Water Resources Management in Central Asia”, where they presented the IWRM Toolbox and instruments, and gave an overview of the SDG process and the activities of GWP Central Asia and Caucasus.

The key output of the workshop was a full consensus among water leaders that Central Asian countries should adopt water strategies addressing IWRM implementation, aiming to save water and achieve maximum water productivity in all uses.

"All participants highlighted very professional and forward-looking character of presentations and debates - and I personally was really impressed by the constructive and goal-oriented atmosphere during the workshop leading towards agreed solutions and common understanding of the way forward," commented Natalia Alexeeva.

It was concluded that to achieve sustainable development in Central Asia and improve the livelihoods of the rural population while protecting the environment in the long term, a more efficient allocation and management of water resources is needed based on regional co‐operation in energy sector and agrarian specialization.

A movement of the Central Asian countries towards wide implementation of IWRM principles – in combination with expensive investment programmes for technical rehabilitation – should be based on the ICWC regional “IWRM Road Map”.

The event was organized by EC IFAS and supported by the UN Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia, UNDP and the Interstate Commission for Water Coordination of Central Asia (ICWC).

GWP Support Needed

Following the regional workshop, the 63d meeting of the Interstate Commission for Water Coordination in Central Asia (ICWC) was held.

GWP Central Asia and Caucasus (CACENA) provided support for this meeting by preparing documents and hosting a preparatory meeting of the working group to draft  the "Concept of water related information exchange mechanisms in Central Asia" (which was agreed by ICWC) and the “Agreement on Information and Analytical Provision for Integrated Water Resources Management in the Aral Sea Basin and Establishment of the Interstate Information Exchange”. This will be passed to the Governments for further consideration and approval.

ICWC also delivered a special request for CACENA to support the sub‐regional Central Asia preparatory process towards the 7th World Water Forum together with other international agencies.

The ICWC was established in February 1992 by five newly independent countries of Central Asia – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – with the task to regulate water resources in the region.

New Technical Focus Paper on Central Asia

GWP Central Asia and Caucasus Regional Coordinator, Vadim Sokolov is a co‐author of the new GWP Technical Focus Paper "Integrated Water Resources Management in Central Asia: The Challenges of Managing Large Transboundary Rivers".

GWP representatives in Tashkent, April 2014

Top photo: Senior Network Officer Natalia Alexeeva giving presentation in Tashkent.

Inset photo: The GWP representatives in Tashkent.