I would like to extend my warm congratulations to the Danube countries on the twentieth anniversary of the signing of the Convention on Cooperation for the Protection and Sustainable Use of the Danube River in 1994. The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes was signed two years earlier, in 1992, and served as a model for your Convention. UNECE is therefore proud of the enormous success of the Danube River Protection Convention, as the basin treaty bringing together the largest number of riparian states.
The Danube River Protection Convention is constantly referred to as an example of good practice in a wide range of sectors and themes. Efficiently served by the ICPDR, the Convention has a transboundary river basin management plan, for which I also congratulate the ICPDR. It also has the first-ever transboundary climate change adaptation strategy, and generously shares its experiences as part of a global network of basins working on climate change adaptation. UNECE supports that network, together with our partner, the International Network of Basin Organizations.
The ICPDR is also a world leader in work on the nexus between water and related sectors, having developed guidelines on sustainable hydropower together with the hydropower industry. There is a continuing flow of information and knowledge between the ICPDR and other joint bodies and interested countries from around the world under the umbrella of the UNECE Water Convention – on how to establish and develop joint bodies, on the benefits of transboundary water cooperation, on climate change and on much more. This flow of information benefits both our Conventions, as well as the many other stakeholders who participate in this work, and contributes to their development.
I look forward to continuing our excellent cooperation and the stimulating and productive exchanges of knowledge and experience.