Artículo | 12 Mar, 2024

Beyond Borders: IUCN Pakistan's Impact at ACIAR Salinity Futures Symposium 2024

A five-day symposium was organized by the ACIAR and Can Tho University in Vietnam during 3-7 March, 2024. The symposium brought members from various countries. Representatives of funding and donor agencies, NGOs, government as well as salinity and conservation experts attended the symposium. A delegation of four members led by the Country Representative IUCN Pakistan attended the symposium and presented the research and community initiatives to promote bio-saline agriculture in Sindh province. It was focused on salinity future in Asia bringing together participating countries representation from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Australia and United Arab Emirates.

IUCN Pakistan’s active involvement in saline agriculture and participating community-based aquaculture in coastal region of Indus delta made this event significant for showcasing project outcomes, networking with experts, exploring further opportunities and strengthening future collaborations.

During the symposium, to debate issues of salinity, Mr. Mahmood Akhtar Cheema, Country Representative IUCN Pakistan, delivered a keynote address to participants of the symposium, at the Tram Chim National Park.   

Mr. Cheema apprised the audience of IUCN's work in Pakistan and internationally, and narrated the zealous endeavours of the organization in safeguarding biodiversity, addressing climate change and promoting sustainable agriculture. He painted a vivid picture of the dedicated member organizations and scientific commission members working on the front lines, their collective mission to protect the planet's ecological richness.

Mr. Cheema expressed heartfelt appreciation for the organizers. ACIAR and Can Tho University were lauded for their pivotal role in bringing together minds committed to environmental stewardship. He presented the IUCN shields to Dr. Koi of Can Tho University as well as to Dr. Professor Michael Mitchells of Charles Struts University, for their remarkable work being done on salinity issues. 

He highlighted Pakistan's projects, with a particular focus on a project aimed at helping communities in adapting to salinity challenges in the coastal regions of Sindh, which is funded by the ACIAR. Mr. Cheema said that “interconnected ecosystems required a delicate balance for their survival”. He lauded the audience for their participation and for championing the cause of conservation.

The project team actively participated in the field days which provided an opportunity for cross learning and the lessons from Pakistan were shared with the participants.