First SWaRMA Steering Committee Meeting Held in Kathmandu, Nepal


Key members of the Strengthening Water Resource Management in Afghanistan (SWaRMA) initiative met in Kathmandu, Nepal, for its first steering committee meeting from 26–28 July 2018. Several adjacent meetings were also held following the committee meeting. 

The first steering committee meeting endorsed a governance mechanism and identified action points and approaches to implement its seven thematic areas. It followed up on the recommendations made during the SWaRMA inception workshop, held from 9–11 March 2018 in New Delhi, India. 

The meeting established a governance structure within the Steering Committee (SC) for strategic decision making and the technical coordination committee (TCC) for technical inputs and the smooth implementation of project activities.

Mohammad Daoud Qazizada, Senior Advisor to the Minister, Ministry of Energy and Water, Afghanistan; Mohammad Rafi Qazizada, Director General, Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation, and Livestock, and ICIMOD Board Member; Eklabya Sharma, Deputy Director General, ICIMOD; and other key members of SWaRMA during the opening session.

Sessions on partnership and theory of change clarified the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder—necessary for successful project implementation, and finalized steps for achieving the project goal. SWaRMA will work through remote partnership. There is a structured and collaborative relationship in place through which relevant organizations in Afghanistan will use knowledge and learning from SWaRMA to enhance their in-house capacity and take the initaitive forward.

Afghan participants acknowledged that SWaRMA has introduced a new model of partnership by bringing more than one ministry on board from the project inception phase to contribute to Afghanistan’s water resources management.

SWaRMA brings together a committed team of experts with sound regional knowledge and policy makers backed by the Government of Afghanistan to strengthen water resource management in the country. It is a joint project with the governments of Afghanistan and Australia, and is implemented through the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in collaboration with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) and national organizations in Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Energy and Water (MEW) is the Afghan focal ministry for SWaRMA.