The Nile: Moving Beyond Cooperation

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Publication Title

The Nile: Moving Beyond Cooperation

Publication Type

UNESCO-IHP, PCCP Series Publication, 33 p.

Author(s)

Alan Nicol

Publication Date

2003

Publication URL

Contact

Contents


Description

This paper examines the development of cooperation on the River Nile. The challenge of creating a more cooperative environment for the management of Nile waters has existed for centuries. In recent years political conditions have emerged in basin countries that have provided a window of opportunity for taking forwards cooperative development of the shared waters. With the support of external agencies, since the late 1990s nine of the 10 Nile riparian countries have been setting in train a process of institutional development that has cemented cooperation and charted a way forward for future development in the Nile Basin. Yet the challenge remains to put this institutional development and cooperative thinking into practice through the development of projects of mutual benefit that are both sustainable and able to deliver benefits to the poorest.

This key challenge is now being faced by the states party to the Nile Basin Initiative. Based in Entebbe, Uganda, the NBI comprises representatives of all basin states except Eritrea and is helping to coordinate separate Vision and Subsidiary Action programs with broad development agendas. The implementation of these projects now presents the key challenge. With success in processes of cooperation, the transition to development activities needs to be made. This process has to become the mainstay of the NBI.

The paper outlines key aspects of the Nile Basin’s history, geography and politics before looking at some of the legal, socioeconomic and development challenges that lie ahead. Exploring the challenges inherent in shifting from cooperation to development, the paper concludes by suggesting that a further – perhaps even more important challenge lies ahead – in terms of ensuring that development processes set in train require clear links to poverty reduction within the basin. Without these, there would be a disconnection between the goals of dispute resolution, the move to cooperation, the transition to development and the achievement of benefits for all throughout the basin.

References

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  • Bulloch, J. and Darwish, A. 1993. Water Wars: Coming Conflicts in the Middle East. London, St. Edmundsbury Press. pp. 124–41.
  • Bricheri-Colombi, S. 1997. Nile Basin Water Resources: How Much is Enough? A Review of Data Needs for Cooperative Development of the Nile. Paper presented to Fifth Nile 2002 Conference, February, Addis Ababa.
  • Conway, D. and Hulme, M 1996. The Impacts of Climate Variability and Future Climate Change in the Nile Basin on Water Resources in Egypt. International Journal of Water Resources Development, No. 12, pp. 261–80.
  • Conway, D, et al. 1997. Exploring the Potential for Dendroclimatic Analysis in Northern Ethiopia. Paper presented at the Fifth Nile 2002 Conference, February, Addis Ababa.
  • FAO. 1995. Irrigation in Africa in Figures, Water Reports No.7, Rome, FAO.
  • Hirji, R. and Grey, D. 1997. Managing International Waters in Africa: Process and Progress. Paper presented at the Fifth Nile 2002 Conference, February, Addis Ababa.
  • Howell, P.P. and Allan, J.A. 1990. The Nile: Resources Evaluation, Resources Management, Hydro politics and Legal Issues, University of London, SOAS.
  • ––––. 1994. The Nile: Sharing a Scarce Resource (An Historical and Technical Review of Water Management and of Economical and Legal Issues). Cambridge, UK, Cambridge University Press.
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  • NBI. 2001. Strategic Action Program: Overview. Entebbe, Nile Basin Secretariat in cooperation with the World Bank, Entebbe, May.
  • NBI TEA 2001. Nile River Basin: Transboundary Environmental Analysis. Entebbe, Nile Basin Secretariat in cooperation with the World Bank, Global Environment Facility and the United Nations Development Programme, Entebbe, May.
  • Stoner, R. F. 1990. Future irrigation planning in Egypt. In: P.P. Howell and J.A. Allan, op cit. Morrehead, A 1960. The White Nile. London, Hamish Hamilton.
  • Shiva, V. 2002. Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit. Cambridge, Mass., South End Press
  • Sutcliffe, J. and Lazenby, J. 1994. Hydrological Data Requirements for Planning Nile Management. In: P. P. Howell and J. A. Allan, The Nile: Sharing a Scarce Resources (An Historical and Technical Review of Water Management and of Economic and Legal Issues).Cambridge, UK, Cambridge University Press.
  • Sutcliffe, J. and Parks, Y. (1987) Hydrological modeling of the Sudd and Jonglei Canal, Hydrological Science Journal, Vol. 32, pp. 143-159
  • Waterbury, J. 2002. The Nile Basin: National Determinants of Collective Action. New Haven and London, Yale University Press.

See also

External Resources

Attachments

 PCCP Nile Basin case study.PDF

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