Thirteen (13) representatives of the Ministries in charge for Water and Environment of seven (7) South Mediterranean Countries (Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Morocco, Palestine and Tunisia) gathered in Barcelona – Spain (15-16 December 2014) on the occasion of the 4th SWIM-SM Steering Committee Meeting to review the advancements of the project and discuss and formulate recommendations for the way ahead. Observers from Regional organizations, institutions and academia active in the Region also participated in the event.
Participants expressed their appreciation for a number of activities carried out in 2014, and in particular for the role played by SWIM-SM in fostering peer-to-peer exchanges among water practitioners in the Mediterranean region.
The European Union officially announced that € 15 million were earmarked in 2014 to finance a SWIM II programme, due to start by the end of 2015. The focus will remain on promoting sustainable water management practices in the same nine Southern Mediterranean countries.
SWIM countries asked to have more actions on the ground and at the national level.This approach has been reflected in the 2015 project’s Work Plan, with an increased focus on the national dimension, particularly through:
- Assistance in drafting national regulations for controlling groundwater artificial recharge;
- Support inestablishing national water / aquatic environment prosecutors and magistrates systems;
- Help in anchoring regional monitoring and evaluation system for participatory irrigation Management (PIM) developed by SWIM-SM in the two pilot countries (Jordan and Tunisia)
Regional activities responding to countries priority needs will also be carried out until the end of SWIM-SM Phase I in December 2015 as follows:
- study tours on wastewater management and natural treatment in rural areas
- training on evaluating and structuring Public-Private-Partnerships (PPPs) in the Water Sector
- extracting lessons learnt from best practices related to sustainable integrated water management that are in the process of being collected
- developing Indicators for monitoring and evaluation of IWRM in SWIM-SM region.
SWIM Demonstration Projects representatives had also the opportunity to present their current achievements and the planned work in 2015. Moreover, they contributed actively to the discussions, including about Phase II, since new Demonstration activities will be considered for granting along with a Support Mechanism component.
To download the documents of the meeting click here