The German government has pledged €20 million for the management of transboundary water resources and adaptation to climate change in the Niger Basin member countries for 2024.
The nine Niger Basin Authority (NBA) countries are Niger, Benin, Chad, Guinea, Mali, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso and Nigeria.
The German ambassador to Nigeria, Annette Guenther, communicated this at the opening of the NBA Regional Steering Committee of Projects and Programmes on Tuesday in Abuja.
According to her, Germany has supported NBA member countries since 2017 through its German Development Cooperation and agencies such as GIZ, committed to regional and international cooperation.
“Since 2017, the German government has supported the NBA with €4 million and on top of that, a new project is about to start, beginning in 2024; this project will be funded with €20 million for better coordination within member countries.
“This is to make sure that the water is used properly and adaptation to climate change is done in a good way so that people can make best use of the water,’’ she said.
Ms Guenther, represented by Matthias Dold, said managing the basins’ shared resources was not an easy task, saying it required good organisation and monitoring.
She said regional cooperation was needed for adaptation mechanisms to climate change, especially in the water-energy-food security nexus in the region, saying financial interventions were over €4 million.
On his part, the Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Joseph Utsev, said the achievements of projects and programmes in the Niger Basin were in line with the strategy to combat poverty and food insecurity.
Mr Utsev noted that the NBA’s experience was the perfect example of the transition from national visions towards a transboundary vision, focused on a more rational management of resources.
“The member countries of the Niger Basin Authority took a decisive step by showing their genuine political will to further form cooperation around the Niger River.
“I would like to urge you to propose relevant outcomes to facilitate the implementation of the various projects and programmes for the benefit of our people given the changing environment in our basin,’’ he said.
In his remarks, Abderahim Hamid, NBA executive secretary, appreciated the Nigerian government for its commitment and financial assistance to the regional body.
He said issues relating to the management and preservation of natural resources, particularly water resources, were the core concern of the basin’s authorities.
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