United Nations Watercourses Convention enters into force

On 19 May 2014 Viet Nam acceded to the UN Watercourses Convention, making it the 35th country to join this global instrument. The accession by Viet Nam to the United Nations Watercourses Convention triggered its entry into force by bringing the number of Parties to the required total of 35. The 1997 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses (United Nations Watercourses Convention) will enter into force on 17 August 2014.

This marks the culmination of a concerted process to promote the benefits of the Convention and support its entry into force, which since 2006 has been lead by WWF. Article 36 of the Convention stipulates that, »the present Convention shall enter into force on the ninetieth day following the date of deposit of the thirty-fifth instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession«.

Entry into force of this global framework convention that seeks to, »ensure the utilisation, development, conservation, management and protection of international watercourses and the promotion of the optimal and sustainable utilisation thereof for present and future generations«, is a significant milestone in the development of international water law. Hopefully, entry into force, together with the global opening of the UNECE Water Convention, will lead to growing awareness of the benefits of these global framework instruments, encourage more countries to join them, and go along way to strengthening transboundary governance arrangements across the world.


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» UN Watercourses Convention User’s Guide