Sustainable Water Integrated Management (SWIM) is a Regional Technical Assistance Programme launched by the European Commission to contribute to the extensive dissemination and effective implementation of sustainable water management policies and practices in the Southern Mediterranean Region.
This is in the context of increasing water scarcity, combined pressures on water resources from a wide range of users, desertification processes and in connection with climate change.
The Programme, with a total budget of approximately € 22 million, is implemented under the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI), following the Euro-Mediterranean Ministerial Conferences on Environment (Cairo, 2006) and Water (Dead Sea, 2008) and carries forward the results achieved by two earlier EC regional programmes, SMAP (I, II and III) and MEDA Water.
SWIM consists of two major Components, which are inter-related and complement each other:
• A Support Mechanism funded with a budget of € 6.7 million and
• Demonstration Projects funded with a budget of € 15 million
Both Components contribute to the achievement of the Programme's specific objectives that consist of:
• Drawing the attention of Partner Countries' decision-makers and stakeholders on existing and emerging threats to water resources, on the necessity to adopt a more appropriate water consumption and water use model, as well as on the existence of solutions to tackle the problem;
• Supporting Partner Countries in designing and implementing sustainable water management policies at the national and local levels, in liaison with existing international initiatives in the area concerned;
• Contributing to ensuring institutional reinforcement and the development of the necessary planning and management skills and facilitate the transfer of know-how;
• Enhancing regional cooperation in the areas of sustainable and integrated management of water resources through institutional strengthening, inter-sector dialogue, awareness raising, capacity building and stakeholder consultation and participation.
SWIM Partner Countries are: Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Lybia, Morocco, the occupied Palestinian territory, Syria* and Tunisia.
*In May 2011, the European Union decided to suspend all cooperation with Syrian authorities