1st working group meeting on international cooperation in Senegal-Mauritania Aquifer Basin
The first meeting of the Regional Working Group on transboundary cooperation on the Senegal-Mauritanian Aquifer (SMAB) took place on 22 October 2020. This Regional Working Group has been vested with the mandate to induce transboundary cooperation and to advise the SMAB states and transboundary basin organisations towards the establishment of a permanent mechanism for transboundary concerted management of the SMAB, shared by The Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Mauritania and Senegal. The main transboundary basin organisations present in this aquifer basin, namely OMVG and OMVS, are associated to this regional dialogue. This first meeting thus constitutes the first step of a process of cooperation on groundwater supported at the highest level of the states. During this meeting a series of baseline were prepared by the partners and discussed by the working group in the field of current knowledge of the resource and related management challenges, data availabilities and data management, water governance legal frameworks and institutional models. This analysis supports the reflexion of the Regional Working Group in defining a regional project and a plan of action towards a concerted management on the SMAB. The regional dialogue on the SMAB is facilitated and supported by the Geneva Water Hub, the Secretariat of the convention on the protection and use of transboundary watercourses and international lakes, serviced by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and IGRAC who joined this initiative as a strategic partner.