Workshop report: Implementation of the ECOWAS recommendations on the economic aspects of major water infrastructure in West Africa
The regional workshop on the theme "Implementation of the ECOWAS recommendations on the economic aspects of major water infrastructure in West Africa" was held on 25 and 26 March 2015 in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso).
It was organised by the ECOWAS Coordination Unit for Water Resources (CCRE) in partnership with the IUCN and IIED consortium, with funding from UKAid and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation through the Global Water Initiative (GWI) in West Africa programme. This meeting brought together participants from 40 countries, the ECOWAS/CCRE IWRM focal points, representatives of the ministries of economy and finance, national focal points of the irrigation initiative in the Sahel, civil society, researchers, dam managers, basin organisations, regional and international organisations, and practitioners.
In April 2014, water sector representatives of the ECOWAS Member States validated the draft regional Directive for the development of water infrastructure in West Africa. The Directive is based on a set of guidelines developed through the work of a panel of independent experts and consultation workshops in the river basins and at regional level with States, basin organisations and civil society. These guidelines are composed of 6 axes, 25 recommendations and 77 actions, presented as principles.
This March 2015 workshop served as a contribution to the operationalization of Axis 4 which requires planners and managers to implement processes that evaluate and optimize the profitability of large hydraulic structures. It also addressed Axis 5 of the guidelines, relating to the gathering and exchange of experiences in the ECOWAS zone in relation to water infrastructure projects.