In response to the burgeoning, but largely unrecognised, freshwater storage gap in South Asia, the United States Department of State has funded a 3-year project titled Built Water Storage in South Asia to enhance water security in the region. This regional project is implemented by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) in collaboration with the GWP SAS which will contribute to a sustainable transformation in how water storage is perceived, planned, and managed.
The targeted countries of the project are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan and the project aims to achieve the following:
- Strengthen national capacities for integrated water storage planning and management.
- Enable relevant ministries and line agencies to make better use of data and approaches for understanding water storage gaps and the options to fill them.
- Facilitate cross-border and regional dialogue to address water storage gaps.
- Address historical inequalities, especially in terms of who benefits from water storage, and the technical and management personnel planning and implementing water storage.
Aligned with this, IWMI and GWP SAS with the close collaboration of the GWP Country Coordinators who are based in the respective countries have scheduled a series of inception workshops on 17, 20, 25, 28 and 30 January 2023 in Pakistan, Nepal Bhutan, Bangladesh, and India respectively. The stakeholders in the water sector covering the public and private sector, non-profits and research institutions are invited for the inauguration where they will be briefed on the project overview including how the project would address water security issues in these selected countries. There will be working group discussions to identify the critical water storage issues including where appropriate, transboundary issues in the countries. The stakeholders will also be briefed on the project logistics and next steps.