Egypt’s Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Aty received, on Sunday, Yerlan A. Baidaulet, Director General of the Islamic Organization for Food Security (IOFS).
The meeting highlighted the need to achieve the utmost levels of cooperation and coordination to achieve sustainable development and access to the optimal management of water resources.
Abdel Aty said that this could be achieved through joint cooperation and exchange of experiences, especially in light of the challenges that many countries face in the field of water resources.
For his part, Baidaulet expressed desire to transfer the distinguished Egyptian experiences in the field of water resources to other Islamic countries.
The two sides agreed on the necessity of benefiting from the Egyptian expertise in the field of water resource management and rationalisation and the use of technology in water management such as (telemetry – satellite images – numerical models) which would maximise the benefit from the water unit, and contributes to increasing agricultural production.
Abdel Aty also invited Baidaulet to attend the 4th Cairo Water Week, to be held from 24-28 October under the title “Water, Population and Global Changes: Challenges and Opportunities”.
During the meeting, the Egyptian minister reviewed the challenges facing the water sector in Egypt, especially the population increase and the limited available water resources, and that Egypt is one of the driest countries in the world, and suffers from water scarcity, as Egypt’s water resources are estimated at about 60 billion cubic meters annually.
Most of the country’s water resources come from the Nile River, in addition to very limited amounts of rainwater estimated at about 1 billion cubic meters, and the deep non-renewable groundwater in the deserts.
Abdel Aty explained that the total water needs of Egypt reach about 114 billion cubic meters annually. The use of agricultural drainage water and surface groundwater in the valley and the delta, in addition to importing food products from abroad, corresponds to 34 billion cubic meters of water annually.
He further pointed to the impact of climate change in threatening the efforts to achieve sustainable development. He also reviewed Egypt’s strategy to deal with the water crisis.
The Islamic Organisation for Food Security, headquartered in Kazakhstan, is a specialised institution of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), dedicated to promoting agricultural and rural development as well as enhancing food security in OIC member states.