Mobilising cross-border cooperation
The ICPDR serves as a platform for cooperation and coordination, and through the Danube River Protection Convention ensures that waters within the Danube River Basin are managed sustainably and equitably.
In 2000, together with all of the parties to the Danube River Protection Convention, Moldova made the political commitment to implement the EU Water Framework Directive. Thus, under the auspices of the ICPDR, Moldovan experts actively contributed to the development of the Danube River Basin Management Plan adopted at the Ministerial Meeting in February 2010. Guided by ICPDR Technical Experts, Moldovan experts have contributed and will continue to contribute to the preparation of the updated Danube Basin Analysis Report and the Second Danube River Basin Management Plan by providing relevant national data. However for Moldova, contributions have certainly been mutual.
Within the last 20 years, the ICPDR has substantially contributed towards meeting the Moldovan obligations under the Danube River Protection Convention. The ICPDR has provided permanent technical support allowing Moldovan experts and governmental and NGO institutions to gain the advanced knowledge, skills and experience needed to implement the Convention at national level. Thanks to the ICPDR’s efforts to secure funds from the Technical Aid to the Commonwealth of Independent States (TACIS) programme, the State Hydro-meteorological Service’s water and soil quality laboratories were equipped with analytical equipment for both national and transnational monitoring and the Communication Centre was equipped with the necessary satellite, hardware and software for the Accident Emergency Warning System in Moldova.
Encouraging joint management of shared regions. Under the framework of the ICPDR, the Heads of Delegations from Moldova, Romania and Ukraine signed a Joint Declaration in 2007: ‘Towards a River Basin Management Plan for the Danube Delta Supporting Sustainable Development of the Region’. As a result of this Joint Declaration, the ICPDR secured funds from the UN Environment and Security Initiative to implement a trilateral Moldova–Romania–Ukraine project called Joint Environmental Monitoring, Assessment and Exchange of Information for Integrated Management of the Danube Delta Region. The aim of the project is to improve cross-border cooperation in the Danube Delta and to build capacities for introducing a river basin approach for the management of natural resources in the Danube Delta region.
Water does not stop at administrative or political boundaries, so the best way to protect and manage water is by close international cooperation between all the countries within the natural geographical and hydrological unit of the river basin – bringing together all interests upstream and downstream – and the creation of a Management Plan for the Danube Delta Sub-basin will ensure that we can safeguard our water resources and promote healthy and sustainable river systems for future generations.
While Moldova has only 1.6% of the Danube Basin, the challenges which we face are the same for the whole Danube community and we continue to rely on the experience accumulated in the region through the Danube River Protection Convention for the last 20 years.