Ashgabat, 29 October 2020: Within the framework of the joint project of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan "Supporting climate resilient livelihoods in agricultural communities in drought-prone areas of Turkmenistan", an online working meeting was held to discuss the results of the project activities on improvement the institutional and legal mechanisms for the efficient use of water and land resources for the period 2017-2020.
As the main mechanism, a working group was established, which includes legal specialists hired by the project, specialists from the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan, the State Committee for Water Management of Turkmenistan, deputies of the Mejlis of Turkmenistan, Khyakimliks of velayats and representatives of the Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs of Turkmenistan.
During the meeting the head of the Working Group, Y. Kepbanov, noted the following: “On a quarterly basis, representatives of state agencies, legal specialists of the NGOs, representatives of the private sector, representatives of local administrations and leaseholders of farmers' associations - practitioners and users of the legal document were invited for a round table. The approach applied by UNDP contributed to the development of the process of continuous training (capacity building) of civil servants, including specialists from etrap and velayat khyakimliks and raising awareness of civil society.”
During this period, the working group carried out a lot of work on preparation of a number of draft laws and by-laws arising from the Water Code of Turkmenistan, the Law of Turkmenistan on Land Reclamation, and the Land Code. Based on the results of the working group in 2017, the Law on the State Land Cadastre was adopted, in 2018 Methodological Guidelines for the assessment of soils and the economic assessment of irrigated lands in Turkmenistan were approved, a draft of a new Land Code, drafts of a Model Agreement on supply of irrigation water to water users and on leasing agricultural land, as well as the draft Rules for maintaining the State Land Cadastre, law on amendments to the Law on farmers' associations and the Law on farms in the field of water use.
During the meeting, participants were presented with the results of the Working Group activities and discussed the following draft by-laws in the field of land and water use developed this year: Methodological guidelines for the development of technological standards for water use, Regulations on the use of intra-farm reclamation systems, Regulations on the use of inter-farm reclamation systems and the Procedures for providing of land for ownership, use and lease.
More than 20 participants - representatives of UNDP projects, the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan, the Mejlis of Turkmenistan, the State Committee of Water Management of Turkmenistan, representatives of the “Suvhojalyk” operational department of Gorogly etrap of Dashoguz velayat and Danev etrap of Lebap velayat, FAO / GEF Regional Project, representatives of the Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs of Turkmenistan, as well as the project team and members of the Working Group have attended the meeting.
As a result, within the framework of the UNDP project in the field of water and land relations, 2 laws, 2 laws on amendments, 7 by-laws were developed, as well as assistance was provided in provision of legal expertise of a number of documents, including legal consulting provided to the project beneficiaries during the period of 2017-2020.
Within the framework of the Working Group, the UNDP project was provided with technical support from the project partners - the program “Assistance to Improvement of Public Administration in Turkmenistan”, funded by the USAID.
Concluding the meeting, participants expressed their commitment to further cooperation in implementation of joint plans for the preparation of draft laws and by-laws in the field of land and water use.