Executive Committee of the International Fund
for saving the Aral Sea


The Aral Sea Basin Program (ASBP-1) is one of the first ASBP aimed at improving the socio-economic and environmental situation in the region. “Program of concrete actions to improve the environmental situation in the Aral Sea basin for the next 3-5 years, taking into account the socio-economic development of the region” (Main provisions).

The first program was launched in 1993, and in January 1994 it was approved by the Heads of State of Central Asia.

The program was aimed at assisting the countries of the basin in implementing priority areas, as well as at strengthening social activities, giving special importance to the fight against poverty and ensuring sustainable development of the region.

In addition to representatives of the Central Asian countries, international organizations and financial institutions actively participated in its preparation.

The main objectives of the Program were identified: stabilization of the environmental situation in the Aral Sea basin; restoration of the disaster zone around the Aral Sea; improvement of water and land resources management in the basin; strengthening the capacity of regional organizations for planning and implementing the Program;

Work within the framework of ASBP-1 was divided into two stages:

The preparatory stage took from 3 to 5 years and about

USD 30 million;

The second stage of implementation took from 10 to 15 years, with the cost of work estimated at about USD 500-750 million.

After the main part of the preparatory phase was completed, in 1997 the Central Asian countries and the international organizations that finance the program conducted a joint review of its status and proposed recommendations for the implementation of the second phase of the program.

As a result, in addition to the funds allocated for the entire program from the state budget, 47.7 million US dollars and 278 million dollars of various loans were also allocated from international organizations in the form of grants.

However, the implemented projects could not fundamentally affect the solution of all the problems of the Aral Sea basin and the suspension of the ecological crisis in the region.