One of the three components of the Mekong Integrated Water Resource Management Project (M-IWRMP) is the Transboundary Component that the MRC’s four member countries implement through transboundary cooperation.
In this component, five bilateral initiatives have been set up by the four countries to address transboundary issues in the management of water and related resources for sustainable development and the improved livelihoods of the communities within the Mekong River basin, through an Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) approach.
The five bilateral projects include a joint communication outreach project for Cambodia’s Tonle Sap Lake and Thailand’s Songkhla Lake basins, a fishery management project in the Mekong and Sekong Rivers of Cambodia and Lao PDR, and a wetland and floodplain management project in Lao PDR’s Xe Bang Hieng and Thailand’s Nam Kam regions. Between Cambodia and Viet Nam there are two water resource management projects being jointly implemented in the Sesan and Srepok Rivers’ sub-basins and the Mekong Delta.
While the sister lakes’ communication project focuses on community outreach activities to promote peer-to-peer learning on good governance of the lake basins to improve resource-based livelihoods in the communities, the four other projects encourage transboundary dialogues to identify significant water resource management issues such as floods, the impacts of climate change and fisheries management. The output from these transboundary projects will contribute to developing a joint management and decision-making mechanism to address the issues at national and sub-national levels.
These projects are designed to create a better institutional framework to build knowledge, disseminate existing expertise and improve decision making for the sustainable development of water and related resources. It is expected that these projects will demonstrate the importance of IWRM-based transboundary management and cooperation as well as the usefulness of the application of MRC Procedures and tools.
The five projects were launched in late 2013 through to mid 2014 and are currently undertaking baseline studies to identify common significant water resource management issues, through field assessments and exchange visits, among other activities at each of the pilot sites.
The transboundary component is financed by the World Bank and facilitated by the MRC Secretariat. Each project is expected to be completed in three years.
The five projects are:
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