Water in Kazakhstan, a key in Central Asian water management

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Central Asia is one of the regions with the highest probability of conflicts over water. Kazakhstan is the main Central Asian economic power and therefore it is important to understand how the country’s water management policy is influencing water availability in the other Central Asian states. Already, the Central Asian economies are developing under increasing water deficiency, resulting in developmental problems. The main reasons for this are increasing political tensions and worsening ecological and socio-economic conditions. Kazakhstan was the first country in Central Asia to develop the pre-requisites for a transition towards integrated water resources management (IWRM). Therefore, Kazakhstan has potential to lead the development of transboundary water integration between all Central Asian states. A scenario for successful regional cooperation on water management in Central Asia involves establishing legal mechanisms for water management following international water law, assistance by international agencies and donors, and integrated social, economic and environmental methodology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)752-762
JournalHydrological Sciences Journal
Issue number5
Early online date2018 Mar 23
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary


  • Central Asia
  • Kazakhstan
  • water availability
  • water management


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