Working meeting to discuss regional water policy
A work meeting of the regional (RWG) and national working groups (NWG) was held in Tashkent on 4-7 December to discuss draft Agreement on the Use of Water and Energy Resources in the Syrdarya River Basin. The meeting was attended by representatives of water and energy agencies (except Chairman of NWG and representative of the water sector of the Kyrgyz Republic) in the Syrdarya river basin countries as well as representatives of BWO Amudarya, BWO Syrdarya and SIC ICWC.
Work Meeting of the Regional Working Group (RWG)
The aim of this work meeting was to agree remarks on articles 7 (item 7.3), 8 (items 8.9 and 8.13) and 9 (item 9.1), and remarks from the Kyrgyz NWG.
Based on the discussion results, the following decisions were made:
- In general, the articles of the draft Agreement were approved and agreed by the participants of the work meeting apart from the following items:
- Item 7.2. The Kyrgyz and Tajik parties agreed this item as amended: “The Parties acknowledge that water release from the Toktogul reservoir in a multi-year regime shall be done depending on hydrological conditions of year, based on long-term planning of flow regulation regime”. The Uzbek and Kazakh parties suggested amending this item as follows: “The Parties acknowledge that water release from the Toktogul reservoir in a multi-year regime shall be done depending on hydrological conditions of year and be no more than 12.2 billion m3”.
- Item 8.9. The Tajik party suggested keeping its last version. The Uzbek and Kazakh parties suggested amending it as follows: “ In average and above average water years and in the threat of emergency situation in the Shardara reservoir and the Syrdarya river lower reaches resulted from high inflow to them, water from the Shardara reservoir shall be released into the Aydar-Arnasay depression. The volumes and discharges of water released shall be agreed by the Parties concerned”.
- Item 9.1. Not changing their position, the Tajik and Kyrgyz parties suggested deleting the first part of the sub-item in this article and only keep “development of large massifs of irrigable lands”. The Uzbek and Kazakh parties suggested keeping the first part of this sub-item “construction of new hydropower facilities and reservoirs in the region…” and so on in the text.
- Article 15. Items 15.2, 15.3 and 15.4 (Remarks of the Kyrgyz party). These items were not considered because of the absence of representatives from water management organization of the Kyrgyz Republic.
- Taking into account the repeated absence of the Kyrgyz NWG, during the consideration of the mentioned issues it is necessary to ask representatives from the Kyrgyz NWG to present their specific suggestions to the draft Agreement on the abovementioned items prior to entering the issue onto the ICWC meeting agenda.
- It is necessary to ask ICWC members to consider and make decision on non-agreed items of the draft Agreement.
Meeting of Working Subgroup 1
At the meeting, Working Subgroup 1 on Development of Rules for Fulfillment of Procedural Obligations to the Draft Agreement on the Use of Water and Energy Resources in the Syrdarya River Basin and Recommendations for Improvement of the Rules for Flow Regulation and Management in the Syrdarya River Basin considered materials prepared by Kazakh, Kyrgyz and Uzbek working groups and RWG, inserted amendments and supplements received from all working groups into documents being developed.
As a result of the analysis of suggestions, correction and generalization made at the meeting, a report of the working group including the following was prepared:
- draft rules for fulfillment of procedural obligations to the Agreement on the Use of Water and Energy Resources in the Syrdarya River Basin;
- draft rules for flow regulation and management in the Syrdarya river basin.
The participants made decision on the following:
- Consider the work on development of recommendations done according to the Terms of Reference.
- Submit the suggestions made to the Project Leader.
- Determine the date of presenting corrections of data on limitations and requirements for management and amendments before 20 December 2007.
- RWG should prepare a final report until 31 December 2007.
Meeting of Working Subgroup 2
The participants of the meeting of Subgroup 2 were: Turkmen representative A.Tachnazarov; Uzbek NWG member R. Srazhitdinov, RWG members O. Lysenko, A. Sorokin, V. Khegay.
The members of Subgroup 2 noted that a Protocol on Completing and Recommending the Work on “Assessment of Channel Losses in the Amudarya River Middle and Lower Reaches” for Approval was signed in Bishkek on 1 August 2007.
However, according to the suggestion of Tajikistan made at the ICWC meeting, the above-mentioned work was sent to the respective Ministries for consideration.
Remarks and suggestions to Project Leader have not been received so far.
Having exchanged opinions, the meeting participants decided:
- To consider the work completed and submit it to ICWC for approval.
- To ask the ADB RETA 6163 project management to extend research direction and render assistance in:
- carrying out assessment of channel losses in the Amudarya river upper reach and its major tributaries;
- carrying out field investigations for specifying channel losses in the upper, middle and lower reaches of the Amudarya river.
Meeting of Working Subgroup 3
A work meeting of Subgroup 3 on Development and Matching of Detailed Methodical Recommendations for Accounting of Basin-Wide Costs, Data Collection and Assessment of Actual Damage from Amudarya and Syrdarya Water Resources Use Regimes was held in Tashkent on 4 to 7 December 2007 within the framework of the ADB RETA 6163 “Improved Management of Shared Water Resources in Central Asia”.
The aim of this meeting was to consider the progress in the implementation of the Terms of Reference (Subgroup 3) for Development and Matching of Detailed Methodical Recommendations for Accounting of Basin-Wide Costs, Data Collection and Assessment of Actual Damage from Amudarya and Syrdarya Water Resources Use Regimes and the preparation of a report on completed work.
The meeting was attended by R.K. Yusupov, group leader, chief specialist of the Ministry of Land Reclamation and Water Resources of Tajikistan.
K.P. Pulatov, Adviser to Chairman of the Committee for Water Resources at the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan;
Y.E. Pulatov, Director General of TajikNIIGiM;
M.Kh. Akmuradov, Chief of Land Reclamation Department at the Ministry of Water Resources of Turkmenistan;
B.M. Khudaybergenov, Deputy Chief of Department at the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources of the Republic of Uzbekistan;
A.G. Loktionov, RWG Member, Manager of Division at BWO Syrdarya;
O.G. Lysenko, RWG Member, Chief of Water Resources Division at BWO Amudarya;
V.V. Khegay, Leading Specialist, SIC ICWC.
Having listened to Subgroup Leader R.K. Yusupov and exchanged opinions, the members of the Kazakh, Tajik, Turkmen and Uzbek NWGs made decision on the following:
- Kazakh and Kyrgyz NWGs should present a digest of basin-wide costs for 2006 before 31 December 2007.
- A developed methodology should be recommended for approval at the next ICWC meeting.
Meeting of Working Subgroup 4
A meeting of Subgroup 4 was held in Tashkent on 4 to 7 December 2007 within the framework of the work meeting under the ADB RETA 6163.
The participants of the meeting were:
for the Republic of Kazakhstan - K.P. Pulatov;
for the Republic of Tajikistan - Kh. Islomov;
for Turkmenistan - A. Tachnazarov;
for the Republic of Uzbekistan - R.Z. Srazhitdinov;
for BWO Amudarya - O.G. Lysenko;
for BWO Syrdarya - A.G. Loktionov;
for SIC ICWC - F.F. Beglov, V.V. Khegay.
- During the work meeting in September 2007 in Tashkent, the members of Subgroup 4 considered, agreed and initialed the draft Statute on ICWC and draft Agreement on Strengthening the Organizational Framework for Management, Protection and Development of Interstate Water Resources in the Aral Sea Basin. Representative of the Kyrgyz Republic did not come to the meeting.
- Both the documents were sent to the Kyrgyz party for consideration and initialing. Copies of the documents were sent to ICWC members.
- During the consideration of these documents at the ICWC meeting in Khodjent, Tajikistan, it was decided:
- Taking into account that members of the Kyrgyz NWG did not initial the mentioned documents, ICWC member B.T. Koshmatov should be asked to take measures for considering the mentioned documents within a month, agreeing them with ICWC members on a polling basis. Keeping in mind the importance and value of the mentioned draft documents, they should be considered and confirmed at the next ICWC meeting.
- During the meeting of Subgroup 4, no official information on initialing of both the documents by the Kyrgyz party was received.
- Representative of the Kyrgyz Republic did not come to the meeting of the Subgroup.
- The members of the Subgroup deem its work completed, and ask ICWC members to consider and make decision on their formalization according to established procedure and take into account the following suggestions in review of both the documents:
- Change the name into “Agreement on Enhancing the Status of ICWC and Its Executive Bodies”;
- Supplement the draft Statute and draft Agreement with an additional item: “Official salaries for the staff of ICWC executive bodies are equaled to official salaries for the staff of international organizations (IFAS according to status). Staff lists of the executive bodies are approved by ICWC decision”.
Meeting of Working Subgroup 5
A meeting of Subgroup 5 on Preparation of a Register of Interstate Objects was held in Tashkent on 4 to 7 December 2007 within the framework of the final work meeting under the ADB RETA 6163.
The participants of the meeting were: K.P. Pulatov, Adviser to Chairman of the Committee for Water Resources at the Ministry of Agriculture of Kazakhstan; Y.E. Pulatov, Director General of TajikNIIGiM; A.S. Tachnazarov, Chief Specialist of the Operation Department at the Ministry of Water Resources of Turkmenistan; R.Kh. Tashev, Chief of Irrigation Systems Operation Department at the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources of Uzbekistan; O.G. Lysenko, Chief of Water Resources Division at BWO Amudarya; A.G. Loktionov, Deputy Chief of BWO Syrdarya; V. Khegay, Leading Specialist, SIC ICWC.
Having considered the report on the Register of Interstate Objects in the Amudarya and Syrdarya Basins, the members of Subgroup 5 made decision:
- To deem the work completed and submit to ICWC for approval;
- To ask the Kyrgyz NWG to make its suggestions and assist in fulfillment of tasks set by ICWC decisions.