The Aral Sea Basin Program (ASBP-4) was developed on the basis of the decision of the IFAS Board of 30 January 2018 by the IFAS Executive Committee together with the Interstate Water Coordination Commission (ICWC) and the Interstate Commission for Sustainable Development (ICSD) with the involvement of national experts and international partners in the following areas:
- Integrated use of water resources;
- Socio-economic development;
- Improvement of institutional and legal mechanisms.
ASBP-4 is a regional program aimed at achieving integrated use and protection of water resources, environmental improvement and socio-economic development of the Aral Sea basin, as well as improving the institutional and legal mechanisms of IFAS. The regional scope of the program and the integrated nature of its projects means that ASBP-4 will include a number of projects, including investment projects, that contribute to achieving water, environmental, food and energy security in Central Asia.
The main goal of ASBP-4 is to implement joint actions and long-term programs to overcome the Aral crisis and strengthen cooperation through targeted actions at the national, regional and international levels to improve the water management, environmental and socio-economic situation, sustainable development and improve the well-being of people in the Aral Sea basin.
Projects, including investment projects proposed by countries and IFAS bodies, contribute to the implementation of national priorities, have a regional and cross-border nature. To increase the financial attractiveness of projects, international development trends, initiatives of donor countries, UN institutions and investors were taken into account.
The implementation period of the fourth program is designed for 2020-2030.
The overall process was carried out under the supervision of the IFAS EC and supported by representatives of the IFAS founding states. The main elements of the preparatory process for significant quality improvement and subsequent achievements were:
- focus on the most important tasks and project lines;
- optimize the number of projects;
- improve the monitoring and evaluation process by EC IFAS;
- close cooperation with international organizations at various stages.
The preparation of the ASBP-4 project is at the stage of completion, and it is expected that it will be adopted in 2021.