This report aims at encouraging increased trans-boundary cooperation in water resource management in Afghanistan and Central Asia, through a bottom-up, basin-based approach that adheres to the principles of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM)

The largest river in the region, Amu Darya, is crucial for the 43 million people who live in the Aral Sea Basin — but river flow and water availability are becoming increasingly unreliable because of the impact of climate change and inefficient water management. This is a security threat heightened by an expected 50 per cent increase in the region's population by 2025, says the report.

It calls for countries that rely on the Amu Darya — Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan — to follow the IWRM approach to balancing competing demands for water, build trust and share practices at the local level by training experts from different countries in joint forums, and avoid multilateral agreements that involve management mechanisms too broad to be effective.