Transboundary IWRM: Burkina and Mali have been working together for a long time

Mali and Burkina Faso are celebrating ten years since the creation of the Joint Technical Committee for Integrated Water Resources Management (CTC-GIRE). The meeting takes place on December 18 and 19, 2023 in Bobo-Dioulasso.

Faced with climatic and economic challenges in a context of continuing degradation of water resources, and the risk of conflicts of use in the Sourou sub-basin, which the two countries share, Burkina Faso and Mali decided to create on July 15, 2013, through the Great Joint Commission of Cooperation and with the support of partners, a joint technical committee for integrated water resources management called (CTC - GIRE Mali-Burkina).

The purpose of this committee is to promote IWRM in the Sourou Basin. As soon as the CTC-GIRE was set up, a roadmap was proposed, together with a three-year action plan covering several areas linked to the protection and balanced, sustainable use of water resources. Data is also exchanged to prevent climatic hazards, facilitate development planning, particularly in the agro-pastoral and fisheries sectors, and prevent conflicts.

Speaking at the official ceremony on December 18 in Bobo-Dioulasso, GWP-AO Executive Secretary Mr. K. Armand HOUANYE, Executive Secretary of GWP-WA, said: "The Sourou IWRM-CTC is a unique experience, which deserves to serve as a case study for other countries in the region. GWP-WA, together with other partners, intends to promote this through initiatives already underway and others in the development phase, in order to make IWRM a real lever for ensuring water security, peace, regional integration and sustainable development at local, national and transboundary levels in our region".

He thanked and congratulated stakeholders from both countries for their active and high-quality participation in the recent Regional Forum on "Capitalizing on and scaling up IWRM best practices for water security and resilient development in the WAEMU region". At this regional forum, Burkina Faso's General Directorate for Water Resources presented its experience, which was recognized as an innovative and successful good practice in IWRM implementation in West Africa, as was Mali's National Directorate for Hydraulics, which presented the experience of the Commission de Gestion des Eaux de la Retenue de Sélingué et du Barrage de Markala (CGESM). "The Executive Secretary of GWP-WA added: "These are therefore well-deserved recognitions of good practices that have been appreciated and hailed by all for their true value, with concrete results in the implementation of IWRM.

It should be noted that in terms of support for the IWRM process in both countries:

  • GWP-WA supported the development of the West African Water Vision in 2000;
  • Supported the establishment of the Unité de Coordination des Ressources en Eau (UCRE), which became the CGRE;
  • GWP-WA accompanied IWRM processes in all ECOWAS countries without exception;
  • Since 2002, GWP-WA has supported Burkina Faso and Ghana with the IWRM CTC, which was a pioneer in setting up the Volta Basin Authority in collaboration with other partners such as IUCN;
  • GWP-WA carried out the first capitalization of the IWRM process in Burkina Faso in 2007-2008, published in 2009;
  • GWP-WA supported the development of Mali's first IWRM plan through the PAWD 1 program between 2004 and 2007, and produced the capitalization document for this process, published in 2009;
  • GWP-WA accompanies Burkina Faso in all Foras on water and sanitation, including the latest Etats Généraux sur la GIRE in October 2023;
  • GWP-WA, through PNE Burkina, organized and piloted the 3 editions of the Trophées de l'Eau au Faso;
  • GWP-WA has supported Mali through PNE Mali in the implementation of its IWRM Plan and works closely with DNH in support of the IWRM unit (PCA IWRM) through numerous activities;
  • GWP-WA supports the countries of the region, including Burkina Faso and Mali, in monitoring of the SDG#6.5.1 indicator on IWRM, the last cycle of which is still being completed.