Participation and Cooperation of Local Parties to Achieve the Goals of the Sistan Project

Neda Asad Filsafizadeh, head of the project “Integrated Natural Resource Management and Socio-Economic Development of Sistan,” announced holding the first meeting of the Hamoun International Wetlands Integrated Management County Plan Work Group on Wednesday, October 13, 2014, at the Zabul Governor’s Office.

This meeting was held in the presence of the special governor of Zabol as the head of the work group, general director of the provincial department of environment (Sistan and Baluchestan province) as the secretary of the work group, representatives of Hamoon, Helmand, Nimroz, and Zahak governors, representatives of executive bodies and Zabol University. The purpose of the meeting was to follow up the performance of various agencies in the region in implementation of plans of the Hamoun International Wetlands Integrated Management plan. During the meeting, each member of the county work group expressed their expectations regarding the “Sistan project.”

Arjmandi, Deputy Governor and Special Governor of Zabul, while emphasizing the need to implement priority measures of the integrated management plan of Hamoon Wetland, invited the work groups to cooperate to achieve the goals of the “Sistan Project.” He acknowledged that the project could bring hope back to the region if successful. The governor of Zabul also emphasized holding regular and continuous meetings of the work group and presenting performance reports. He called on various departments and stakeholders to use the opportunity to improve the situation in the region while accompanying and participating in the implementation of the “Sistan Project”.

Pourmardan, General Director of the provincial Department of Environment in Sistan and Baluchestan, pointed out the importance of the management program in reviving Hamoon Wetlands and the role of international institutions in improving the condition of the wetland and stressed the need for representatives of stakeholders to be responsible and responsive. He considered implementing the small and quick-win projects plan by the “Sistan Project” as an essential and practical step in reviving hope among the people and attracting their participation in the development process.

Falsafi stated that the goals of this project are to strive for integrated management of natural resources and socio-economic development of the Sistan region by emphasizing the support of alternative livelihoods under competitive advantages. She mentioned the components of the Sistan Project as capacity building and cooperation, Sustainable management of soil and water resources, and development of the local communities. She attributed the success of the development plans to the participation and cooperation of all key stakeholders. She stressed the influential role of the local community in the progress of the projects.

The “Hamoun International Wetlands Integrated Management Plan” has been developed to apply the ecological management approach to revive, preserve and sustainably exploit Hamoon International Wetland with the effective participation of all local, national and international stakeholders and was approved by the council in 2017. Under this program, four national, provincial, county and local work groups have been formed with specific job descriptions. The county work group is responsible for the integrated management of Hamoon wetland by policy-making and planning for the wetlands, and supervision over all activities influencing the wetlands’ ecosystem following regional planning and coordination between executive bodies according to the developed management program for the Wetland.

The “Integrated Natural Resource Management and Socio-Economic Development of Sistan” project, abbreviated as “Sistan Project,” is a joint project between the Iran Department of Environment and the United Nations Development Program, which the European Union funds from 2020 and with specific objectives has been operating in the area for five years.

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