On 12 April 2016 in Dushanbe, the Steering Committee of the National Policy Dialogue (NPD) on integrated water resources management marked the fifth anniversary of the dialogue process in the country and celebrated the Government approval of the Water Sector Reform Programme for 2016–2025. The preparation of the reform programme, an outcome of the NPD process and crucial for establishing integrated water resources management in the country, lasted over three years and was supported by UNECE, the European Union and UNDP.
The aim of the Water Sector Reform Programme is to create a framework for the transition to water resources management according to hydrographic borders (river basin principle) and to clarify the competencies of different national institutions involved in the water sector. The management of water resources according to river basins will replace the current system of management according to administrative borders and forms the cornerstone in the implementation of integrated water resources management. It is expected that transition to basin management will take place by 2020. Different international donors are currently engaged in developing River Basin Management Plans for all the basins in the country, a precondition for the management transformation.
The sound management of water resources by Tajikistan is important for the entire Central Asian region as it’s located in upstream of the major transboundary rivers, the Amu Darya and Syr Darya.
The first step in reforming the water sector in Tajikistan came in late 2013, when water sector policymaking and the management of the irrigation infrastructure were divided, ending the potential conflict of interests that existed when the same institution was responsible for both. The adoption of the Water Sector Reform Programme by the Government on 30 December 2015 represents the next legal and institutional changes necessary for management and protection of water resources in Tajikistan.
Note to editors
National Policy Dialogues (NPDs) on Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) and Water Supply and Sanitation are the main operational instrument of the European Union Water Initiative Component for Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia. UNECE is the strategic partner for support to the policy dialogue processes on IWRM.
NPDs are under way in the following countries of the region: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Republic of Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Ukraine.
For more information, please visit: www.unece.org/env/water/npd
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