Support to IWRM-based water sector reform implementation in Tajikistan (Phase II)

What is the Project about?

The project “Support to IWRM-based water sector reform implementation in Tajikistan” is aimed at strengthening water resources management guided by the principles of IWRM-based reform and thereby increasing water and food security and improved livelihoods in rural areas of Tajikistan. UNDP will follow closely the system of objectives based on the feasibility studies published by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) for the National Water Resources Management (NWRM) project for Syr-Darya river basin, and projects from other donor agencies such as Asian Development Bank (in Pyanj river basin), World Bank (in Kofarnihon and/or Vakhsh river basin), JICA (Vaksh river basin), and etc.

The intervention is generally designed in the framework of the extended phase of the agriculture sector reform - the integral focus of the overall reform agenda and to which other sectoral reforms are linked and integrated. The agricultural reform in conjunction with the social development programme is aimed to develop productive, profitable, and sustainable employment-creating agricultural systems, based on ecologically sound natural resource use and management.

Project goals and objectives

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen water resources management guided by the principles of IWRM and River Basin Management (RBM) approaches in Tajikistan. Specific objectives for the intervention strategy are to support the government’s objectives to strengthen its national and basin capacities and institutions in the field of water management, to reduce its sector’s dependence on outside assistance and better coordinate water resources management by the government, donors and national and local organizations.

Project intended outputs:

The primary output of this assignment is to enhance the implementation of the endorsed water sector reform roadmap. Specific outputs to which the project will contribute include:

1. Sustainable, unified and regular policy dialogue and consultation platform further strengthened;

2. Water institutions and authorities are brought in conformity with IWRM principles and are empowered to implement reform roadmaps on the ground; including a comprehensive capacity building programme.

3. Policy guidance and technical assistance for water reform implementation are well coordinated and harmoniously implemented in four different basins of Tajikistan.

  • The Government of the Republic of Tajikistan finally endorsed the “Water Sector Reform Programme for the period 2016-2025”, along with its Investment/Implementation Plan, laying legal foundations for the implementation of the reform agenda in the water sector;
  • Heading further to the reforms implementation the Mission team had already developed and/or contributed to a few policy proposals of highest priority for implementation in 2016. Those include (a) reform implementation action plan, (b) regulation on division of roles and responsibilities amongst key ministries and agencies in the water sector, (c) draft strategy for irrigation and drainage sub-sector development, (d) Concept for capacity building and institution development, which was proposed to the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources (MEWR) following a rapid assessment of present skills and capacities within MEWR and Agency for Land Reclamation and Irrigation (ALRI) in late October 2015, (e) development of draft Regulations and Charters for River Basin Organisations (RBCs) and River Basin Councils (RBCs), (f) development of the initial structure for National Water Strategy, (g) support to development of River Basin Water Planning Methodology for Syr Darya Basin, and (h) development of National Conceptual Framework for Basin Planning and Management;
  • Provincial level policy dialogue launched in Syr-Darya river basin and met already on few occasions with inputs from the Mission Team. The Mission Team has provided technical support in strengthening the link and feedbacks between national and basin level policy implementation;
  • National high-level policy dialogue between Development Coordination Council (DCC) and the Government of Tajikistan (GoT) was revitalized in November 2014, just a month after the arrival of the international Policy Advisor and met on few occasions but came to a halt in April 2015, following transfer of the Deputy Prime Minister (focal person for water and agriculture). The position of the Deputy Prime Minister remained vacant until April 2016, however, so far the relaunch of the high-level policy dialogue seems unlikely. Currently, a series of meetings within DCC, including DCC-Retreat on 21 November 2016 and a planned DCC-Core Group meeting during the second week of December 2016, are ongoing to determine the role of DCC in policy and reform issues for the next couple years.
  • Following the approval of the reform programme, the Team moved swiftly to establish a coordination mechanism that would ensure effective cooperation and coordination among state institutions in the implementation process and between them and development partners. This initiative is especially crucial as development partners have committed a total investment of around US$240 million in support of infrastructure rehabilitation and support to reform implementation. Established in mid-January 2016, the “Coordination Unit for the Implementation of the Water Sector Reform Programme” includes key state institutions, such as MEWR, ALRI, Committee for Environment Protection (CEP), State Unitary Enterprise “Khojagii Manziliu Kommunali” (SUE-KMK) for drinking water and the Main Department of Geology (MDG) charged with groundwater. Key development partners in the coordination unit include the European Union (EU), the World Bank (WB), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSEC), FinWater WEI, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (UN-FAO) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Between January and November 2016, the coordination unit held four meetings.

Project partners

At the policy level, UNDP intends to closely interact with government counterparts, with the pivotal role of the new Ministry of Energy and Water Resources (MEWR). Other partners to be engaged will include:

  • Parliament of the Republic of Tajikistan;
  • Agency for Land reclamation and Irrigation under the Government of the RT;
  • Committee for Environment Protection (CEP);
  •  State Unitary Enterprise “Khojagii Manziliu Kommunali” (SUE-KMK) for drinking water;

 Main Department of Geology (MDG)

Who finances it?


Delivery in previous fiscal year

USD 1,701,568

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