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SADC Protocol on Shared Watercourses  

The Revised Protocol on Shared Watercourses in the Southern African Development Community (Revised Protocol) is an example of a regional agreement. It was originally developed by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in 1995 as part of the implementation process of the SADC Treaty. The original Protocol on Shared Watercourses (Original Protocol) was revised to recognise the UN Watercourses Convention (ORASECOM 2007). The Revised Protocol was signed in 2000 and came into force in 2003. This was an important step to implement SADC Regional Water Policy and Strategy.

The Revised Protocol promotes the establishment of shared watercourse agreements and institutions, and enshrines the principles of reasonable use and environmentally sound development of the resource. It supports Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) and the Regional Strategic Action Plan for Integrated Water Resources Development and Management (RSAP–IWRM).

The Revised Protocol supports strengthening the principles of integrated management of shared basins with specific provisions for:

  • Equitable Utilisation;
  • Notification of Planned Measures;
  • No Significant Harm; and
  • Emergency Situations.
The Revised Protocol on Shared Watercourses enshrines the principles of reasonable use of water.
Source: GTZ 2009
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Explore the principles of Integrated Water Resource Management applied to the Kunene