The Centre for Strategic Perspectives (CSP) at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI), organized a Panel Discussion on “Envisioning New Water Diplomacy in South Asia” on March 9, 2021. The panellists at the discussion included: Ambassador Shafqat Kakakhel, Chairman BoG, SDPI; Mr. Ziad Alahdad, former Director, World Bank; Mr. Ashfaq Mehmood, former Federal Secretary, Water and Power, Government of Pakistan; Mr. Ali Tauqeer Sheikh, Consultant World Bank; and Mr. Feisal Naqvi, Senior Partner, BNR Law Firm.
Introducing thesubject under discussion, Mr. Najam Rafique, Director CSP stated that Pakistan depends on adequate supplies of water for agriculture, industry, create power, ensure public health and maintain essential ecosystems. Yet growing populations, soaring demand, unsustainable management practices and mounting environmental challenges are imposing increasing burdens on its crucial freshwater resources. Moreover, global Climate Change (CC), threatens to intensify these strains, upsetting precipitation patterns and altering river flows in the Indus Basin. It is estimated that Pakistan will be the most water stressed country in the region by 2040.