The Meeting of Senior Officials from Member States of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) took place in Istanbul, Republic of Turkey from 12 to 14 January 2012 to consider the OIC Water Vision document. The Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs, Republic of Turkey in collaboration with the OIC General Secretariat hosted the Meeting. Fifty participants from thirty-two OIC Member States and OIC Institutions attended the Meeting during which Mr. Atilla Karaman, Researcher, represented the SESRIC.
Mr. A. Cuneyt Gerek, Director of the 14th Regional Directorate of State Hydraulic Works of Turkey inaugurated the Meeting and delivered the address on behalf Prof. Dr. Veysel Eroğlu, Forestry and Water Affairs Minister of Turkey. After having welcomed the participants of the Senior Officials Meeting on the OIC Water Vision, Mr. Gerek stated that the establishment of a common vision and cooperation among OIC member countries in many of which water resources are limited and scarce is a very important step. Mr. Gerek went on to say that global warming, climate change, population increase, and industrialisation increase the pressure on water resources of the OIC region. Reminding that effective management of water resources has become a priority issue for almost every country, Mr. Gerek highlighted that the OIC Water Vision will help increase scientific activity to build capacity, technology transfer, and cooperation among OIC member states.
Following Mr. Gerek, Dr. Razley Mohd Nordin, Director General of the Science and Technology Department, OIC General Secretariat, delivered the statement of the OIC General Secretariat. Dr. Razley welcomed the participants and underlined that the OIC General Secretariat submitted the draft OIC Water Vision document for the consideration of OIC Member States pursuant to the decision of the Special Meeting of the Ministers Responsible for Water from the OIC regions held at the sidelines of the Fifth World Water Forum on 20 March 2009 in Istanbul, Turkey. The Special Meeting requested the OIC General Secretariat to formulate concrete proposals for enhancing cooperation on the water issues through preparation of an OIC Water Vision and establishment of an OIC Water Council. Accordingly, an Advisory Panel of Experts, composed of experts from all OIC regions, held several meetings to prepare the draft OIC Water Vision.
The Meeting participants elected the following members of the Bureau by acclamation:
1. Chairman: Republic of Turkey
2. Vice Chairmen: Sultanate of Oman , Republic of Senegal
3. Rapporteur General: Republic of Kazakhstan
After the adoption of the Agenda and Work Programme of the Meeting, Dr. Razley presented the “Progress Report on the OIC Water Vision Document”. Afterwards, Mr. Fawzi Sultan, the Chairman of the OIC Advisory Panel of Experts on Water presented the OIC Water Vision document.
The Meeting participants reviewed the OIC Water Vision document, examined major water related issues and identified concrete measures for strengthening cooperation among OIC Member States in the sector of water. The participants agreed to present the OIC Water Vision document for adoption by the Islamic Conference of Ministers responsible for Water and finalized Draft Agenda and Program of Work as well as Draft Resolution for the Islamic Conference of Ministers Responsible for Water.
The Meeting welcomed the offer by the Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs of the Republic of Turkey to host the Islamic Conference of Ministers responsible for Water on 5-6 March 2012 in Istanbul, Turkey.