Representatives of the Global/Asian/African/Arab and Latin American G-WADI Regional Secretariat and Asian G-WADI members countries from 9 Asian members (China, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Thailand and Vietnam) and Oman as well as representatives of UNESCO Offices (Bangkok/Beijing/New Delhi/Tehran/Paris/Santiago), and Prof. Abdin Salih and Prof. Soroosh Sorooshian, Members of the Global Advisory Group of G-WADI, met in Beijing, China on 20th September 2013.
Resulting from an intensive and interactive process, the participants:
- Extended special thanks and appreciation to our host “CAREERI”, Prof Xin Li, Prof. Zhuotong Nan and their team, Institute of Atmospheric Physics Team and UNESCO Offices in Bangkok/Beijing/New Delhi/Tehran, for the opportunity provided to attend and benefit from the International workshop on remote sensing and eco-hydrology in arid regions and Dr William Logan, Deputy Director, International Center for Integrated Water Resources Management (ICIWaRM), “under the auspices of UNESCO”, for supporting the Global G-WADI meeting along with this workshop;
- Underlined the urgent need for UNESCO Offices in the regions of Africa, Arab, Asia, Latin America and respective G-WADI secretariats wherever they exist, to draw-up mechanisms for effective coordination as per the attached Terms of Reference; the experience of the Asian case could be shared with other regional members for their reference;
- Emphasized an urgent need for an improved communication between and amongst the member states, Africa, Arab, Asia, and Latin American G-WADI secretariat, UNESCO field offices and requested establishing a communication mechanism that is efficient, frequent and dynamic. This may include an e-newsletter, and an e-discussion group.
- Declared their firm intention to work together to enhance the visibility and outreach of the Africa, Arab, Asia, and Latin American G-WADI networks—the existing web site of Global and Asian G-WADI could be served as model to other members—and also invite other members to use available web page facilities to contribute national/regional news and reports;
- Emphasized developing joint research initiatives in areas identified as common concerns for members of Africa, Arab, Asia, and Latin American G-WADI;
- Committed themselves as members of the Africa, Arab, Asia, and Latin American G-WADI to convince their governments and policy makers to prioritize water resources of the arid and semi-arid regions of their countries/region. This may include contacting their planners and policy makers to secure funding from governments and other bilateral funding sources for pilot basins and other activities and providing successes in this direction to the respective G-WADI secretariats and UNESCO;
- Called upon UNESCO Headquarters to allocate sufficient seed resources, and to assist all regional G-WADI Networks to generate additional resources for their activities;
- Requested UNESCO Regional/Cluster Offices in Africa, Arab, Asia, and Latin America to assist their respective G-WADI network to prepare in coordination with the G-WADI secretariat a plan of action on funding mechanism;
- Expressed its commitment to contribute to implementation of IHP VIII activities in coordination with IHP networks and regional settings, in consideration of the priority areas under the IHP VIII (2014-2021) “Water Security: Responses to Local, Regional and Global Challenges” and particularly theme III, Addressing Water Scarcity and Quality and other related themes.
- Welcomed the interest expressed by the Belgrade, Serbia-based Category 2 Center for “Water for Sustainable Development and Adaptation to Climate Change”, under the auspices of UNESCO, to join the G-WADI programme and, with the help of Programme Secretariat, will work to formulate its roles and responsibilities as a networking organization in Southeast Europe between now and the next meeting;
- Appreciated the efforts of Asian G-WADI in jointly publishing a special issue for G-WADI in International Journal of Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions with research outputs from all regional networks;
- Requested CAREERI, Chinese Academy of Sciences to continue supporting the Asian G-WADI Secretariat for another three years and appreciate the desire of Iran and India to host Secretariat next term. The new management setup will be Coordinator of Asian G-WADI group from CAREERI and four Co-coordinator each one from Almaty, Beijing, New Delhi, and Tehran Cluster Countries. From UNESCO side coordinated by Mr Jayakumar with the support from Officers from Almaty, Beijing, New Delhi and Tehran UNESCO Cluster Offices.
- Welcomed two new member countries from Asia such as Thailand and Vietnam to be part of Asian G-WADI group now officially Asian G-WADI represented by 13 Countries (Afghanistan, China, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Vietnam) in addition requested UNESCO New Delhi to coordinate with IHP Nepal to become member for Asian G-WADI.
Beijing, P.R. China
20 September 2013