A work meeting of thematic subgroups on development of rules for fulfillment of procedural obligations and recommendations for improvement of the rules for regulation and management of water and energy (“water-energy” at the suggestion of Kyrgyz and Tajik National Working Groups (NWG)) resources in the Syrdarya river basin, and revision of the draft Agreement on Strengthening the Organizational Framework for Management, Protection and Rational Use of Water Resources in Transboundary Water Bodies was held under the ADB RETA 6163 “Improved Management of Shared Water Resources in Central Asia” on 30-31 May 2007 in Tashkent. Leaders of Kazakh, Kyrgyz and Tajik NWGs, members of thematic subgroups and members of the Regional Working Group (RWG) took part in the meeting.
The participants were informed about appointment of A.M. Zairov as Leader of Tajik NWG and amendments to the membership of the working groups. Prof. V.A. Dukhovny set out the progress in follow-up activities after the work meeting under the project and the ICWC meeting in Almaty, 25-26 April 2007.
According to the decision of the 47th ICWC meeting, the new draft Agreement on the Use of Water and Energy Resources in the Syrdarya River Basin was mainly agreed and should be signed through sending notifications of approval by the parties within a month. The sent text of the Agreement was signed by A.D. Ryabtsev Chairman of the Committee for Water Resources at the Ministry of Agriculture of Kazakhstan, and S.R. Khamrayev, Deputy Minister and Head of the Water Department at the Ministry of agriculture and Water Resources of Uzbekistan.
According to the decision of the 46th ICWC meeting, a lag was marked in implementing measures under items 2 and 3 of the work schedule, noting that work under items 7 and 8 has not been started yet. The meeting participants appealed to the leaders of thematic subgroups to intensify activities of subgroups.
The participants ask the leader of Tajik NWG to appoint no later than 15 June 2007 Tajik representatives for thematic subgroups, especially leader of the subgroup on development and agreeing of detailed methodical recommendations for accounting of basin-wide costs, collection of data and assessment of actual damage from water resources use regimes. It is planned to hold 1st meeting of the thematic subgroup in early July 2007.
Kyrgyz, Tajik and Uzbek NWGs presented written remarks to the draft Statute on ICWC. According to the decision of the 47th ICWC meeting, the draft was considered in concurrence with the draft Agreement on Strengthening the Organizational Framework for Management, Protection and Rational Use of Water Resources in Transboundary Water Bodies (Interstate Sources) in the Aral Sea Basin (version 1/2007, April 2007). Only Uzbek NWG presented written remarks to this draft Agreement send to all ICWC members and executors on 1 May 2007.
The draft Statute on ICWC was considered on 30 May 2007. Amendments adopted during the discussion and matters to be further agreed were mentioned in the new draft Statute on ICWC.
The draft Agreement on Organizational Framework was discussed up to item 6 inclusive (version 2/2007, May, Tashkent), including with regard to remarks of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan provided earlier to the 2003 Agreement version, which were not taken into account, according to the opinion of Kyrgyzstan. In the opinion of Uzbek NWG, earlier provided written remarks were not taken into consideration during the discussion. It was decided that the parties should consider suggestions of Uzbek NWG and present their positions.
Due to the opinion of representatives from Kyrgyz and Uzbek NWGs on the need for getting opinions from all NWGs, the work on this Agreement was stopped until possibility to compare opinions from different countries. Both the representatives consider it necessary to complete the work on the draft Agreement, and then start revision of the Statute.
NWGs will present remarks and suggestions to the discussed documents up to 20 June 2007. Representatives of NWGs will agree with ICWC members the adopted amendments to reach a consensus. After that a decision will be made to hold next meeting of subgroups.