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Increasing water use efficiency on WUA and water user levels


Title Increasing water use efficiency on WUA and water user levels
Category of tools Irrigation technique and technology
Usability of practice for adaptation to climate change Moderate
Implemented by Department of Water Management and Reclamation of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food Industry and Reclamation (MoAFIR) of the Kyrgyz Republic with the support of Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation
Used by

Country: Kyrgyzstan

Province: Jalal-Abad Region

Practice also applied in the following localities

Batken and Osh Regions; Nooken, Suzak, Bazar-Korgon, Nookat and Aravan Districts

Local specifics

Water User Associations (WUAs) are located to the northwest of Jalal-Abad (region’s capital) on the border of Namangan and Andizhan Regions of Uzbekistan (Kugart River Valley, 1,200 m ASL, northern tail of the Fergana Valley).

Practice usage period

Start date: 01.01.2009

End date: 31.12.2017

Problem solved through this practice

Low water use efficiency on WUA and farm levels

Tools used in the practice

Technical tools:

Effective water use technologies, modern technologies of irrigation water management.

Cognitive tools:

Consultations by Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation and local experts, capacity-building training seminars.

Description of the practice and its results


Capacity building:

  • farmers in pilot areas underwent trainings on advanced methods of effective water use;
  • the Project was implemented within WUAs and agriculture servicing organizations;
  • in 2011, 1,694 farmers (including 488 women) underwent community-level trainings on effective management of water resources; training and awareness-raising materials (manuals, modules, newsletters, etc.) were designed, published and disseminated among partners; also, Guidelines on Effective Community-Level Use of Water Resources and Advanced Irrigation Methods were developed and disseminated.

Partnership building:

  • trainings-of-trainers for partner organizations on 10 aspects of effective irrigation water use were held;
  • irrigation specialists visited all partners for consultations (30 visits);
  • partners received spillways to measure water consumption;
  • farmers exchanged their experiences in the course of exchange visits.


The practice promoted building of WUA capacities, increasing the efficiency of irrigation water use on farm level as well as building farmer capacities on water resources management.

Lessons learnt and recommendations made

Lessons learnt:

Water shortage and inefficient water use (field/farm level) pose obstacles to farmers receiving high yields and incomes from agricultural production. Excessive irrigation in upper-stream areas and water shortage in lower-stream areas, although a paradox, occur simultaneously as farmers lack knowledge on actual crop water requirements and water-efficient irrigation.


The practice should be scaled-up across the country.  It is also necessary to conduct regular trainings to raise awareness among farmers and build their capacities on applying advanced irrigation methods providing them with an opportunity to manage scarce water resources more effectively.

Source of practice
  • Domestic tools (outcomes of research by domestic R&D organizations)
  • Foreign tools (transfer of foreign experience)
Brief information on the project

Project title: Effective Water Use (SEP) (Kyrg. “Suunu effektivduu paidalanuu”)

Project duration: 2009-2017 (9 years).

Project goal and objectives: enhance water resources management frameworks and capacities in terms of rendering services to farmers with the aim of increasing their incomes, food security and capabilities to adapt to social, economic and climate risks; improve farmers knowledge and their abilities to apply advanced field-level irrigation and water collection methods providing them with an opportunity to manage scarce water resources more effectively.

Project beneficiaries: water users (farmers) and WUAs.

Project implementer: Department of Water Management and Reclamation of the MoAFIR of Kyrgyzstan

Funding source Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
Information sources
  1. Assessment report on water user associations performance in southern regions of the Kyrgyz Republic, 2010;
  2. Presentation “Review of adaptation projects in the Kyrgyz Republic: preliminary outcomes”; 
  3. SEP: Effective Water Use, Kyrgyzstan, 2011 Annual Report, HELVETAS ;
  4. "Suunu Effektivduu Paidalanuu” (SEP) Leaflet, Intra-Farm Water Resources Management Project.
Form submission date 18.05.2018
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