Pakistani officials call for water agreement with Afghanistan

India Climate Dialogue

By Fawad Ali

Pakistan’s water crisis may worsen in future given the government’s failure to reach an agreement on how to manage the rivers it shares with its neighbour to its northwest, Afghanistan. Pakistan and Afghanistan share at least seven rivers but have signed no agreement on how to jointly manage the water. This may become a major issue as ongoing power and irrigation projects upstream in Afghanistan on shared rivers may impact water flow.

Afghanistan is building dams on the Kunar and Kabul rivers – tributaries of the Indus. Islamabad, in turn, is building its own water storage and hydroelectric projects on the Kabul River and its tributaries, without consulting Afghanistan.

Experts and officials at Pakistan’s Indus River System Authority (IRSA) believe an agreement over the waters will be vital for future of both countries.

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