US assures coop for better water management

STAFF REPORT ISB: The United States is committed to provide assistance to Pakistan for improved water management and efficiency. This was expressed at a recently held panel discussion on Water Assistance in Agriculture: Perspectives from the US in the city.

The discussion highlighted some of the major water-related development programmes currently underway in the agricultural sector in Pakistan.

Chris de Veer from the US Department of State informed that cooperation and assistance is being extended under the five major areas, including institutional capacity building on water issues, strengthening of bilateral relationships, and investment in infrastructure, science and technology.

Another programme on research and development on water management is in collaboration with the Higher Education Commission (HEC).

Randy Chester from USAID highlighted that their programs are mainly focused on providing new irrigation technologies and technical support for efficient water management at the local level.

Arshad Abbasi, Advisor on Energy and Water at SDPI, observed that local communities demand their own water management systems and there is now a need for decentralization in the sector. Participants also expressed the need for South Asia regional cooperation with regards to water issues as climate impacts worsen.

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