The Ili-Balkhash River Basin is shared by Kazakhstan (60%) and China (34%) and partly the Kyrgyz Republic. The river Ili gives about 80% of the whole of water inflow of the Lake Balkhash, which is one of the biggest lake ecosystems on Earth.
Increasing agricultural development, pollution from industries, population growth and hydropower development directly affect the amount and quality of water flow in the lake, threatening livelihoods and ecosystem of the river basin. While population and economic pressures continue to increase, it is crucial that Kazakhstan and China take immediate joint measures to establish institutional and political basis for the sustainable management of the river basin.
This project is the national component of the regional EU-UNDP project “Promoting Integrated Water Resources Management and Fostering Transboundary Dialogue in Central Asia”. It builds upon the results of previous IWRM and river basin projects in Kazakhstan. The project aims to support bilateral cooperation and joint activities with China, engage stakeholders, as well as provide expert advice to the bilateral commission and in order to improve the existing legal agreements between the two countries.