The Netherlands to share its expertise in water management with Kazakhstan – expert

Fredrik Huthoff
Photo credit: IHE Delft

Kazakhstan will enlist help of one of its most long-standing partners in Europe, the Netherlands, to mitigate the consequences of colossal floods that hit some of its regions this spring. On top of that, as per two memorandums inked between Kazakhstan and the Netherlands in the sphere of water management cooperation following Mark Rutte’s visit, Astana and Amsterdam have commenced the development of a detailed plan to exchange experience in that field.

Fredrik Huthoff, Associate Professor Hydraulic Engineering at IHE Delft, talked about the bilateral cooperation in the field with the New Time TV show. The Dutch expert previously visited Kazakhstan at the request of the Embassy of the Netherlands in the country to study the situation with the floods.

“In the Netherlands we have quite a long history of intense work on flood risk management. Mostly it started in the fifties after, let's say, our most recent disastrous flood event,” Huthoff said. “And, we like to look at flood management from flood management cycle approach that includes prevention, preparation, response and recovery. And especially in those times since then in the Netherlands, we have invested a lot of time and effort and research and organizations on the prevention and preparation side”.

That, according to the Dutch expert, involves various aspects, like, smart spatial planning, flood resilient infrastructure, hydraulic structures to distribute waters, but also modeling techniques and calculation techniques to make the right choices.

“These are technologies that we have a lot of experience in and that we are willing to share. It is something where we could collaborate with Kazakhstan, where we believe we have really something to offer a value. We are going to look at it and we are open to do this together with the Kazakh authorities with the intention to learn from it,” stressed Fredrik Huthoff.

“Earlier, two MoUs were signed in the field of water management cooperation. The idea is to have also research and exchange of scientific knowledge. We have this now, and we have identified specific topics, where we want to start exchanging our expertise. So, that's going to happen, now quite soon,” he added.

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