Where we work


IWaSP in Pakistan is working in the water-strained Punjab province to sustainably mitigate the shared water risks of public and private sectors and civil society. The goal is to ensure water security for 100,000 people.
Context, Approach and Objectives

As many livelihoods in Pakistan significantly depend on agriculture and textiles, a large amount of water in the country is abstracted from fresh water resources for irrigation and production purposes.

Currently, water demand is projected to outstrip the supply, and there are already some early warning signs that show the country is facing an impending water crisis: water pollution, contamination of surface and ground water, lack of clean drinking water and shortage of irrigation water supply in agricultural areas. Exacerbated by a rapidly growing population and increasing urbanisation, these serious threats to Pakistan’s water security and sustainability, put the country at almost the top of the world’s most water-stressed countries.

If properly addressed, however, water can serve as the engine of economic growth for Pakistan. This makes the availability of a robust water stewardship imperative. The active involvement of the public sector, private sector and civil society organisations will lead to the efficient use of the country’s valuable water resources.

IWaSP in Pakistan aims to meet the following objectives:

  • Collectively and sustainably secure an adequate supply of irrigation water for agricultural use
  • Collectively contribute towards an increased supply of drinking water to farmers and villagers
  • Collectively secure the water supply to the textiles industry and improve the industry’s overall water efficiency in a sustainable manner
  • Reduce the impact of waste-water discharge by the textiles industry
  • Seek more collective engagement between community members, organisations and industries towards water security
  • Raise awareness of water-related issues across the cotton value chain

Partnership Name




Lahore Water Stewardship Partnership (LWaSP)


Improving water security in the textiles industry (including cotton processing)


August 2016 – March 2019


Cotton Producers Water Stewardship (CWaSP)


Improving water security in the agricultural areas (including cotton producing fields)


August 2016 – March 2019


Achievements to Date

IWaSP has sought out partners across all areas touched by the cotton value chain and has included stakeholders like the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Lok Sanjh Foundation (LSF), Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA), and All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA). The goal is to introduce standards that reduce the environmental impact of production, and to attain long-term water security in Pakistan. Some of the activities related to these partnerships include:

  • Training delivered on 3Di Model in Lahore by Nelen and Schuurmans (N&S), to build the capacity of WASA, to forecast floods during the monsoon season and to explore the possibilities of water drainage and subsurface storage
  • Training of 100,000 local farmers on water saving and agricultural efficiency
  • Provision of technical and advisory services, through capacity-building workshops to equip partners on best practices and techniques in water management – particularly in the context of climate change
Challenges and Outlook


  • The need for more awareness on water risks – There is an urgent need to create awareness among the masses and specifically among stakeholders on the intense water challenges faced by Pakistan. The capacities of farmers and textiles producers need to be developed towards sustainable consumption and production practices, and as well as efficient water management techniques
  • Water Pollution – The excessive use of groundwater by communities and the dumping of industrial effluent – as well as municipal waste – in natural water bodies has resulted in the contamination of groundwater and surface water. This polluted water further leads to a lack of clean drinking water for communities and the exacerbation of health issues
  • Water inefficiency in the textile industry – There is a dire need to improve the efficiency of water usage and waste-water treatment by textile factories, to conserve water and reduce pollution



  • A more active engagement with stakeholders – IWaSP in Pakistan is following a bottom-up approach to involve the private sector, government organisations and civil society in generating innovative models, which will address water risks
  • A higher use of technology in water management – The 3Di Model for Urban Flood Management was introduced by IWaSP to provide partners with more detailed hydrological and hydrodynamic analyses. This technology will ultimately allow partners to take preventive measures against flooding and ground water depletion
  • An improvement of water efficiency in the textile industry – IWaSP is promoting the use of alternative, environmentally friendly chemicals in the textiles industry’s knitting and weaving processes. This will help reduce the use of harmful chemicals that pose a significant threat to the environment
Country Set-up

Since 2016, GIZ’s International Water Stewardship Programme in Pakistan has been promoting a collaborative approach in integrating global best practices in water stewardship with existing local knowledge.

Further Information on Pakistan’s Water Resources

With a per capita water availability of less than 1000 m3, Pakistan is ranked as the third most water stressed country in the globe [source: Azizullah, Azizullah & Khattak, Muhammad Nasir Khan & Richter, Peter & Häder, Donat. (2010). Water pollution in Pakistan and its impact on public health — A review. Environment international].

Irrigated agriculture in the Indus Basin is the major user of water in Pakistan. Additionally, rapid population growth is putting more stress on the country’s supply of water.

IWaSP is a milestone of an innovative approach towards integrated water resource management.

Contact Information

Country Coordinator, Dr Naveed Alam
House no.65 Street 2, Cavalry Ground, Lahore.