By Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan
Ashgabat (June 12, 2017). Most recently the government of Turkmenistan arranged a well-organized three days’ Central Asian international ecological forum under the slogan “Initiative for cooperation in the field of environmental and sustainable development in the Central Asia”.
Most of the Central Asian Countries are confronting with acute shortage of water which has been further deteriorated due to alarming climate change and inharmonious legal frame work. Being pioneer of water diplomacy in the region, Turkmenistan has already initiated many meaningful measures to achieve legal harmony among the Central Asian Countries and most recently held Central Asian International Ecological Forum reflected its strong political commitment and visionary leadership to cope with the declining water levels and climate change.
It was attended by the officials of the Central Asian governments, heads and representatives of the international and regional organizations, diplomatic missions accredited in Turkmenistan, leading experts of environmental protection, representatives of the ecological sector and Media take part in the Forum.
The main topic of the forum was “Climate change and water cooperation in the light of the sustainable development in the Central Asia”. It was interactive forum which was meant to achieve the main goal i.e. assistance in strengthening of a dialog between the governmental institutions and international community, scientific circles, civil society and business structures of the Central Asian republic in the issues of development of environmental protection as well as sharing views and elaborating joint vision of the sustainable development strategy for the region.
The forum began with the greeting message of President of Turkmenistan H.E. Mr. Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, addressed to the participants of the Central Asian international ecological forum and representatives of nature protection organizations. Heads of the delegations from the Central Asian Republics delivered statements.
There were two plenary sessions on the first day of the Forum. High level segments passed under the title “Challenges and opportunities for ecological cooperation in the field of climate change and water resources in Central Asia” and “Harmonization of the legal base of the Central Asian republics in the field of water cooperation and ecology”. These sessions were dedicated to the opportunities for collaboration and the role of the diplomats and parliamentarians in terms of the climate change and water cooperation in the region.
Second and the third days of the forum covered the thematic discussions. There were parallel sessions and conclusions on June 7, 2017. The closing ceremony was took place the same day.
It was a successful international forum during which all the stakeholders rigorously participated. It explored different workable mechanism to achieve the desired goals of sustainable development, water cooperation, legal framework, challenges and opportunities imposed by climate change among all the member states of Central Asia. It pinpointed core issues confronting water, climate change, sustainable development and harmonization of legal base of the Central Asian Republics. It also suggested the way forward for the collective human survival, and achieving of socio-economic prosperity in the region.