On September 28 the meeting of the Small Basin Council (SBC) of the Isfara river sub-basin was held in Isfara town of Soghd oblast of the Republic of Tajikistan. Stakeholders of the river basin participated in this meeting: Deputy Chairman of Isfara town, representatives of the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources of the Republic of Tajikistan and of the Agency of Land Reclamation and Irrigation under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan, representatives of the Land Reclamation and Irrigation Administration of Soghd oblast, representatives of the SBC, specialists of MSDSP, Aha Khan Foundation project and Helvetas. The meeting was held within the frames of the joint CAREC-USAID project Smart Waters.
On the meeting, Smart Waters specialist presented the project. Further, parties discussed Tajikistan water sector reforms. Particular attention on this meeting was given to the presentation on the further cooperation between the Aga Khan MSDSP project and the Small Basin Council of Isfara river sub-basin, and also on the experience on Basin Councils extension in Central Asia.
In addition, the work implemented within the frames of the SBC short-term basin plan was discussed during the meeting. The basin plan was developed with the frames of USAID project “Partnership of stakeholders in the joint policy development: Fostering transboundary collaboration on small watersheds in Central Asia”. This project was implemented by CAREC in 2012-2014.
The Council reviewed the composition of the SBC members at the meeting. Parties decided to take the rotation approach to conduct SBC meetings by general voting. Also, SBC members agreed to apply this approach to SBC chairmanship between members of Isfara and Kanibadam SBC's.
The next meeting of the Tajik side of Isfara SBC is scheduled for November-December 2018. Stakeholders will jointly priority identify the challenge of the Isfara river sub-basin.
Smart Waters project is implemented by CAREC with the financial support of the United States Agency for International Development USAID during the period 2015-2020. Overall objective of the project is to enhance regional cooperation on shared water resources. Specifically, Smart Waters addresses the knowledge dis-lock in the region in water sector, builds working relations among water managers and specialists, and demonstrates the potential of the basin management approach and cooperation with the academia.