Recommendations for water protection in Macedonia

Using know-how from the Umweltbundesamt to improve monitoring and river basin management

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Vienna/Skopje, 30 January 2019 – Together with European experts, Macedonia has been working for the last two years on the development of a strategy for bringing national water protection up to EU standards. A team of Austrian, Macedonian, Lithuanian and Dutch experts, under the leadership of the Umweltbundesamt (the Environment Agency Austria), supported the Macedonian authorities and developed recommendations for the implementation of the European Water Framework Directive. In addition they prepared a draft of a River Basin Management Plan for the River Vardar. The Austrian know-how was required to set up national water monitoring and data management and to adapt Macedonian legislation to the EU environmental standards, also with regard to possible EU accession negotiations. On the occasion of the official closing event on 29 January in Skopje Georg Rebernig, Managing Director of the Environment Agency Austria, said: “European water protection instruments are the key to success in ensuring good groundwater, river and lake status in Macedonia. Together with the project partners, our experts have paved the way for the successful use of these instruments in the future.”


In addition to the Environment Agency Austria, experts from the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism and from the Federal Provinces of Austria also participated in the project. The other project partners were the Lithuanian Ministry of Environment, the Lithuanian Environmental Protection Agency, the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, and the Dutch research institute Deltares. The funds for the project were provided through the European Instrument for Preaccession Assistance (IPA).

The Environment Agency Austria in a nutshell


As Austria´s most important environmental expert organisation and one of Europe´s leading environmental consultants the Environment Agency Austria stands for a transformation of the economy and society to ensure sustainable living. Its experts provide the basis for decision making at local, regional and international level. The Environment Agency Austria is committed to transparency and impartiality in its work and engages in dialogue with politics, administration, business, science and civil society.


The Environment Agency Austria has a demonstrable track record of successful projects in more than 60 countries – from the new EU Member States to the Western Balkans, the Middle East, the Maghreb countries and Asia. The Environment Agency Austria works as an adviser to UN and EU institutions and as a partner in more than 200 national, European and international networks, bodies, and working groups.


Further information:

Petra Kestler, Environment Agency Austria, Press Office, Tel.: +43 1 313 04 5432