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Transfer of Irrigation Infrastructure to Water Users

Central Asia has a complex and extensive irrigation infrastructure which requires substantial financial and material resources in order to maintain it effectively. The transition of the Central Asian countries from centralized control to a market economy, including in agriculture, has resulted in a reduction in state budget allocations for this sector. One of the most effective ways of solving this problem is to transfer responsibility for the management, operation and maintenance of water systems to water users themselves.

This transfer of responsibility is beginning to happen in Central Asia. Water users have started to merge creating Water Users Associations (WUAs) and to take responsibility for the management, operation and maintenance of irrigation systems. However, many members of the WUAs lack the necessary knowledge, skills and experience to register or manage the organization or the infrastructure. In addition, the regulatory framework has not kept pace with these changes and requires refinement and improvement.


Agricultural producers at bazar (food market) in Khiva, Uzbekistan
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