Gilgit-Baltistan; Land and Water in the Light of Economic Development Projects

Creator: hbs. All rights reserved.

The dialog took place on 15th August, 2016 in Gilgit. The key questions raised by the participants included the following:

  • What are the readiness mechanisms for fairness in the social and ecological transformations that are coming to Gilgit-Baltistan through mega-projects in the near future?
  • Do local CSOs have adequate knowledge of international and global economies that will impact the local rights?
  • How can local institutions reclaim control of natural resource based economies and ensure legal transparency in transactions with investors? (e.g. In hydro-electric power generation or mining of mineral wealth)

The Group Aspirations:

  1. An increased knowledge of global economies and their local impact will assist the already strong local rights to be ready for fairer deals with outside investors.
  2. A stronger representation of G-B in national politics is a real opportunity in the wake of coming Chinese infrastructure investment in the area.
  3. Strengthening and formalization of indigenous land tenure system is also a readiness mechanism that will empower local communities and influence groups.
  4. A mechanism to legalize rights to endemic species with patents needs to be designed so that local resources are protected at source.
  5. Local participation of civil society, research institutions and youth organizations should be designed during the process of negotiating Chinese investments in G-B.
  6. Local policy institutions must have stronger capacity to influence legal transparency in transactions that would affect social and ecological assets of G-B.
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