TASHKENT – On 7 June 2018, the second meeting of the Nexus Regional Steering Committee dedicated to the development of a portfolio of investment projects to foster water, energy and food security in Central Asia was held in Tashkent.
The meeting was organized in the framework of the Central Asia Nexus Dialogue Project: Fostering Water, Energy and Food Security Nexus Dialogue and Multi-Sector Investment ("Nexus") as the parallel event of the Central Asian International Environmental Forum. The Nexus Project is financed by the European Union and implemented by the Regional Environmental Centre of Central Asia in partnership with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with the support of the Executive Committee of International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea (EC IFAS).
Representatives of EC IFAS, basin organizations and national ministries and agencies responsible for water, land management, energy and economic development from all five Central Asian countries participated in the meeting. Eight project ideas proposed by the Intersectoral Working Groups of Turkmenistan and Tajikistan provided ample dialogue on regional priorities that foster water, energy and food security in Central Asia, with benefits for all countries.
Cooperation experience between Senegal Basin riparian countries, presented by Vokhidzhon Akhmadzhonov, representative of the Ministry of Water Resources of the Republic of Uzbekistan, gave new impetus and inspired a lively discussion about opportunities for regional cooperation. This successful practical example of uniting riparian countries in the joint management of common infrastructure and assets and resulting benefits at macro level was very useful for the participants involved in the development of the new Aral Sea Basin Program and the institutional strengthening of EC IFAS.
Preliminary results of an institutional analysis carried out by IUCN, provided additional food for thought on opportunities for cooperative investment planning across sectors in Central Asia. The ensuing discussion considered challenges related to institutional capacities, planning and budgetary processes, and the prevalence of the water sector, particularly in the Aral Sea Basin Program planning process. The results of the institutional analysis will provide priority actions for the coming months.
The third meeting of the Regional Steering Committee is planned for October 2018 in Astana, Kazakhstan, back-to-back to the Meeting of Parties to the UN Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes.
“Central Asia Nexus Dialogue project: Fostering Water, Energy and Food Security Nexus Dialogue and Multi-Sector Investment” or Nexus project is implemented by CAREC in cooperation with the International Union for Conservation of Nature with the financial support of the European Union. The overall objective of the project is to create a multi-sectoral enabling environment to facilitate sustainable and climate-resilient investments for increased water, energy, food security and ecosystems in Central Asia. The project is implemented in five countries of Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) during the period 2016-2019