News Workshops

14 th International Drainage Workshop was held in Dushanbe from May 30 to June 1, 2024.

The 14th International Drainage workshop adopted the theme, Modernization of Irrigation and Drainage Systems to adapt to Climate Change and for Sustainable Development, with papers and presentations on three thematic topic sessions:

  • TS-1: Modernization of irrigation and drainage systems to adapt to climate change: current state of management, science, technology, and successful international, regional, and national practices;
  • (ii) TS-2: Harmonizing Sustainability: Empowering Young Professionals and Gender Inclusivity in Integrated Water Resources Management;
  • (iii) TS-3: Nexus Approach: Strengthening the “water-energy-food” interactions.

The Workshop was organized by the Secretariate of the National Commission on Irrigation and Drainage of Tajikistan as part of the International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development” 2018-2028 under the auspices of the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage.

It was well attended with representatives of the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage, national irrigation and drainage commissions, government ministries and agencies, scientific circles, non-governmental organizations, international financial institutions, and international organizations, as well as specialists in the field of irrigation and drainage from Australia, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, the United Kingdom, Egypt, Zimbabwe, India, Iran, Italy, China, Nepal, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Japan.

At the opening ceremony of the event, Deputy Prime Minister of Tajikistan Sulaimon Ziyozoda noted that the land reclamation and irrigation subsector of Tajikistan is an important link in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and the country’s Strategic Goals for the period until 2030, including ensuring food security and employment in rural regions of the country , as well as reducing the risks of water-related natural disasters.

The President of the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage, Mr. Marco Arcieri, noted that by organizing such an event at the international level, Tajikistan provided participants from more than 20 countries with a platform to consider issues such as the modernization of irrigation and drainage systems in the context of climate change, issues of interaction water-food and energy, including the environment, as well as youth engagement and gender equality in the water sector.

Dr. Safdar Niazi Shahraki, Deputy Minister of Water and Soil, Ministry of Agriculture – Jahad, Islamic Republic of Iran noted that they are ready to develop cooperation with Tajikistan on the introduction of water-saving technologies and modernization of irrigation and drainage systems.

Moreover, 8 Iranian companies active in the irrigation and drainage sector, for example in the manufacture and supply of irrigation and drainage pipe, and pressure irrigation systems, displayed products and provided information to participants over the course of the workshop.

The workshop recognized the need for continued water diplomacy between central Asian States to address the potential for increased tensions due completing demands for water, including for (winter) energy generation and for (summer) cropping.

New technologies and improved farmer services need to be adopted to achieve water and energy efficiency gains, and for crop yield and production gains.

Improved, real time and accurate flow gauging of cross border river and canal flows remains a priority. The recent installation of slip meters with ultrasonic flow meters to measure flows from Uzbekistan to Tajikistan in the Great Fergana and North Fergana canal has proven successful.

Regional water sharing agreements need to recognize the water-energy-food nexus and should reflect the wider economic considerations that influence how water is managed.

Adopting a common Central Asia water-energy-food nexus institutional platform would facilitate cooperation between water management authorities and research institutes of the countries of Central Asia, leading to: (i) more effective and increased donors funding, with pooled finance to support sector reform, decarbonization, and development, (ii) cross boarder water resources initiatives, water regulation, metering, and information sharing, (iii) studies including research and development, and (iv) identification and preparation of quality projects, and their prioritization.

The Workshop resolved that investments in the I&D sector should recognize the role of women in crop production and promote gender equity. Both women and youth should be targeted for capacity development and formal trainings, including trainings abroad and for study tours.

Finally, the proposal to host the First Central Asia Regional Conference in Tajikistan is welcomed.

The Tajikistan National Commission on Irrigation and Drainage extends its deepest gratitude to all those who contributed to the successful realization of the 14th International Drainage Workshop. We are profoundly grateful to the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan and the Agency for Land Reclamation and Irrigation for their unwavering support and commitment. We also extend our sincere thanks to the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage for their continuous collaboration and guidance throughout the planning and execution of this workshop.

This event would not have been possible without the generous financial support and sponsorship from various development partners, including: (i) the Asian Development Bank, (ii) the OSCE Program Office in Dushanbe, (iii) Caritas Switzerland in Tajikistan, (iv) Helvetas Swiss Inter-cooperation in Tajikistan, and (v) Acted in Tajikistan. 

We would also like to thank all participants, speakers, scientific committee, translators and volunteers for their hard work and dedication, which made this workshop successful, and whose active participation led to the valuable discussions, knowledge sharing, and collaboration for sustainable irrigation and drainage development adapting to climate change.

We look forward to continued cooperation and shared success in the future, and we thank all donors and participants for their support and commitment.