The preservation and management of water resources in the Arab region was the theme of the 13th Sectoral Meeting of the United Nations and the League of Arab States and their specialized agencies convened on 23-25 October 2017 meeting recommended that a regional Working Group on Water be established within the framework of the Regional Coordination Mechanism (RCM). This recommendation was based on the recognition that while many United Nations and League of Arab States agencies serve the Arab States on water-related issues, no single agency can cover all water-related challenges facing the region on its own.
At the global level, a similar recognition on the need to improve coordination and coherence across agencies led to the establishment of UN-Water in 2003 under the United Nations Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB). This global mechanism on water also recommended the formation of similar inter-agency coordination mechanisms at the regional level.
The establishment of a regional inter-agency coordination mechanism on water-related issues involving United Nations and League of Arab States organs will thus facilitate cooperation, collaboration and coherence for the benefit of the Arab region.
The RCM Working Group on Water will foster cooperation and coordination on programmes, plans and activities affecting water resources management and the delivery of water-related services in Arab States at the regional, sub-regional, inter-regional or national levels, as appropriate. This may include the pursuit of collaborative work in support of Arab States on water-related strategies and action plans, assessments, monitoring tools, capacity development and technical assistance for various stakeholder groups.
Membership in the Working Group is open to the regional offices and bureaus of the United Nations system, the League of Arab States Secretariat and its specialized organs, as well as bilateral and multilateral funding agencies working on water-related issues in support of the Arab States.