Afghanistan: UN helps Government draw up national strategy to tackle drought

2 November 2006

With over 2 million people facing the effects of drought in Afghanistan, the United Nations has teamed up with the Government to run a two-day workshop to tackle water scarcity, a vital factor in a country where agriculture accounts for 52 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) and employs 66 per cent of the work force.

“A sound national strategy to address the problem of drought has become essential not only for agriculture and economic development, but for the survival and the success of the Afghan people,” UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Country Representative Serge Verniau told the gathering in Kabul, the capital.

Organized by the Afghan Ministry of Energy and Water together with FAO, the workshop on Planning and Management of Water Resources for Drought Management in Afghanistan, which ended yesterday, drew participants from key government ministers and agencies involved in drought management.

It analyzed the current drought problem and its agricultural, social and environmental impacts. It also reviewed existing drought management practices, and agreed on the need to set up institutional support, including the creation of a National Drought Committee, making several recommendations for designing a sound national strategy.


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