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Webinar on Crop Water Productivity in Afghanistan


Date: 28 February 2019


PRESENTATION: Webinar on Crop Water Productivity in Afghanistan [Er. Najumuddin (Afghanistan)]


Young Professional Series

Webinar on Crop Water Productivity in Afghanistan


Ensuring water security remains critical in Afghanistan for future agricultural production and to satisfy other livelihood needs. Agriculture contributes roughly a third of the national economy and over two-thirds of employment, especially in rural areas. Agricultural growth remains a key component of national growth and employment, and also provides a foundation for the successful structural transformation of the national economy. Due to arid to semi-arid climate of the country, agriculture to a large extent is dependent on the availability of irrigation water. Hence, Afghanistan’s economy is essentially water dependent.

As competition over water increases under the combined effects of population and economic growth, improving water productivity will be increasingly essential to satisfy the multiple and conflicting demands from various sectors. Many river basins experience water stress and population is living with an inadequate level of water security. Water stress affects food security, energy production and ecological status of the basin. It also adversely affects the health and livelihoods of the population. Afghan river systems are already the most stressed river systems in Asia (with Helmand river at the top) and probably in the world.


As in the rest of the world, climate change and the associated increase in climate variability, as well as global and regional changes, such as declining groundwater tables are expected to exacerbate water issues. Afghanistan is particularly vulnerable given its mountainous environment and snow-based hydrology. (Source: Irrigation modernization by enhancing water productivity through water accounting by Suman Sijapati).


Assessment of Crop Water Productivity (CWP)


The concept of Crop Water Productivity (CWP), in general, is taken as a robust measure of the ability of the agricultural systems to convert water into food and fiber production. While it has been principally used to evaluate the function of irrigation systems as the amount of ‘crop per drop’, usually expressed in terms of kg/m3 or tons/ m3, it is the most meaningful indicator where water resources have become increasingly scarce. The basic purpose of CWP is to enable comparisons between water use systems in space and time i.e. ‘before and after’ or ‘without and with” for project implementation of irrigation related agricultural projects.

The time period for the assessment of CWP would cover at least one complete crop cycle, extended over a complete year (winter and summer crop seasons) to account for productive and non-productive water use. However, the assessment may be extended over several years to derive estimates of average, minimum or maximum crop water productivity within each season.

Speaker: Er. Najumuddin (Afghanistan)


Mr. Najumuddin graduated from Khyber Pukhtoonkhawa (KpK) Agricultural University Peshawar, Pakistan in 2011 with M.Sc in Water Resources Management. He completed his master research work on ‘Evaluation of Water Management Practices and Water Productivity in Service area of Balkh canal’ under USAID funded Project “Afghanistan Water, Agriculture & Technology Transfer” (AWATT) in 2010.


He joined the On Farm Water Management Project (OFWMP) in 2011 funded by Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) / World Bank as Water Management Specialist/ Area Team Leader for OFWMP/Herat Region. In 2012, Mr. Najumuddin was transferred to OFWMP-North Region as Water Management Specialist/Regional Manager and was responsible for On Farm Development Works (canal improvement, dissemination of modern Irrigation & Agricultural practices) in Northern Region of the country. As a Regional Manager, he was responsible for both technical and administrative management of OFWMP-Northern regional office.


Later, Mr. Najumuddin was appointed as Senior Water Management Specialist/Head of Water Management Unit of the project and was responsible for planning, implementation and monitoring of Water Management related activities in five regions.


As a focal point for the Feasibility Study of Andkhoi Irrigation Canal (Irrigating approximately 200,000 ha of cultivable land from Amu River), Mr. Najumuddin is responsible for new irrigation area development in Amu River Basin under overall supervision of H.E. Deputy Minister of Irrigation & Natural resource, Ministry Agriculture, Irrigation & Livestock (MAIL).


Mr. Najumuddin has attended various trainings/workshops all over the world including On Farm Water Management & crop production, flow measurement techniques, Watershed Management, Modernization of Irrigation System, Design of Micro Irrigation system/ HEIS, Water Accounting and Budgeting. He also presented a paper on “Current challenges and future need of On Farm Development Works in Afghanistan’’ during the 23rd International Congress on Irrigation and Drainage (ICID) held in Mexico City, Mexico (8-14 October 2017).

He can be contacted at najum.anjum@mail.gov.af




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