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Committing to advance transboundary water cooperation worldwide for sustainable development, climate action, stability and peace (side-event at the UN 2023 Water Conference)

23 March 2023
New York United States of America

The side event has been organized by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Spatial Planning of the Republic of Slovenia on behalf of the Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition.

The event was held in the ECOSOC Chamber of the UN Headquarters in New York at 18:30-19:45 local time and webcasted by UN Web TV.


Transboundary waters account for 60 per cent of the world’s freshwater flows. More than 3 billion people depend on them. Cooperation on shared resources is therefore essential to promote sustainable economic development, human and environmental health, biodiversity, climate action and resilience, disaster risk reduction, and peace. Unfortunately, cooperation in most transboundary basins is not fit to deal with future challenges and progress is too slow.

To sustain and advance cooperation, the Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition, a diverse, multi-stakeholder coalition of actors from around the world with a wide range of functions and capacities, was formed. In preparation to the Conference, the Coalition has provided a catalyzing framework for the submission of voluntary commitments on transboundary water cooperation as part of the Water Action Agenda.

The Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition is a multistakeholder partnership making a commitment to the Water Action Agenda (WAA) to promote and support transboundary water cooperation at all levels worldwide. The Coalition includes: Chile, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Namibia, The Netherlands, Panama, Senegal, Slovenia, Switzerland, Uganda; European Union; ESCWA, GEF, IaDB, OAS, UNCDF, UNDP, UNECE, UNEP, UNESCO, World Bank, CeReGAS, EcoPeace Middle East, Geneva Water Hub, GWP, IGRAC, IHE Delft, INBO, IUCN, SIWI, University of Kinshasa, Water Diplomacy Center/Jordan University of Science and Technology.


The side event highlighted commitments made to the WAA by countries and stakeholders, including basin organizations, aiming to improve transboundary water cooperation. Highlighted commitments addressed different dimensions: Legal and institutional, Data, information, knowledge and technical support, Capacity development and Funding and financing.

A particular emphasis has been put on the benefits of transboundary water cooperation, and on financing.

Speakers included high-level representatives (Ministers, heads of agencies and organizations) of coalition members and of other transboundary cooperation actors, such as river basin organizations.