Equitable management of water resources in Koshi basin stressed

Kathmandu, March 27

Researchers, policy makers, and development practitioners in China, India, and Nepal need to actively collaborate to improve and share knowledge on managing water resources in the Koshi River basin by integrating livelihoods and gender as core aspects into water resource management.

This was the key message during a two-day regional workshop ‘Water-livelihoods-gender nexus to advance Koshi Basin Management,’ which concluded in Kathmandu yesterday.

Over 70 participants from Australia, China, India, and Nepa took part in the workshop jointly organised by the Department of Irrigation and Department of Agriculture.

The event was hosted by the Koshi Basin Programme of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation with support from Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

“The Government of Australia is proud to be supporting improvements in livelihoods in South Asia, where 40 million live in Koshi basin”, said Glenn White, Australian ambassador to Nepal.

“With increasing pressure, especially on women who are taking a larger role in farm-based livelihoods with rising male outmigration, their role as decision makers needs to be stressed”, said David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD.

“We generate knowledge at the local level and take it to the policy level to support the livelihood strategies of local communities,” said Shahriar Wahid, coordinator of the Koshi Basin Programme.

Experts also suggested that research and analysis had to be more practical for policymakers. “What we need is specific, policy-relevant analysis, which will help a variety of responsible actors work towards gender equitable development”, said Tira Foran from CSIRO.