Brussels, 23 November 2022 (TDI): Pakistani Delegation to Belgium and Netherlands had mutual exchanges with European Counterparts on Water Governance.

The Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSF) Pakistan and HSF Brussels worked together to plan the delegation’s week-long trip, which featured high-level conferences, outings, and field trips at the European, National, Regional, and Local levels.

During a study trip to Belgium and the Netherlands earlier in November, Pakistani bureaucrats, politicians, and specialists reviewed water governance and disaster management strategies with their European counterparts.

Abid Hussain Shah Husainy, Senior Specialist/General Manager, Environment & Social Safeguard Division; Dr. Hassan Abbas, ZiZAK Pvt. Ltd.; Dr. Mehreen Mujtaba, Environmental Expert, and Author; Mohammad Ehsan-ul-Haq Leghari, Planning, and Development department, Government of Sindh; and others were among the Pakistani expert delegates.

Syed Bashir Ahmed Agha, Director General, of the Agricultural Engineering Department, Government of Balochistan, and Nasir Ghafoor Khan, Chief Engineer South/Director General, Irrigation Department KP Water Resources Regulatory Authority were also part of the delegation.

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In light of this year’s severe floods in Pakistan, the study tour aimed to increase bilateral understanding of the issues of water governance with a focus on climate change and disaster preparedness.

The delegates also spoke with European counterparts about international cooperation on a variety of issues relating to climate change and non-traditional security problems.

At the Emergency Response Coordination Centre of the European Commission, disaster management is provided both inside and outside of the EU.

At the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium, early warning systems, and risk management, the national Dutch agency Rijkswaterstaat, which is responsible for national water management, flood prevention policies, & transportation infrastructure involves in the key session of delegation.

Furthermore, the delegation made a tour of the Sewer Museum, the Brussels water cycle, wastewater management, and water quality assurance.

Officials from both sides discuss cooperation between nations in the management of water resources, the International Scheldt Commission’s controlled inundation area, & the reduction of flood risk, Early warning systems, flood control, & climate adaptation.

The delegates also had meetings with officials from the European External Action Service, the European Institute for Asian Studies, HSF Brussels, Deltares, NATO Headquarters, the European Commission, and Belgian media.

A number of HSF employees, including Dr. Steffen Kudella, Resident Representative, HSF Pakistan, and Dr. Thomas Leeb, Director, HSF Brussels, joined the delegates.