Regional Cooperation in the Water Sector in the Maghreb - CREM (Phase1)

Approval Date
January 2014

Project Duration (phase 1)
5 years (January 2014 – December 2018)

The second phase of the project, granted by the BMZ, begins in January 2019, for a further 36 months. 

Financial and Technical Partners
The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ); The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources - BGR

Country of operations
Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia

Main Beneficiaries
Agence Nationale des Ressources Hydrauliques (ANRH) & Agence de Gestion Intégrée des Ressources en Eau (AGIRE) in Algeria

  • Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment of Morocco (MEMEE)
  • Ministry of Agriculture (Office of Planning and hydraulic Balances in Tunisia) (BPEH).

The CREM project aims to contribute to ongoing reflection in the three Maghreb countries (AMU) for the establishment of a regional natural resources management strategy. The project has been launched following the conclusions of the Arab Maghreb Union’s meeting held in Rabat in January 2006 which recommended the following:

  • Establish Integrated Water Resources Management  (IWRM) at the national and regional levels
  • Enhance knowledge sharing
  • Strengthen information exchange on IWRM at the regional level

The enhancement of regional cooperation could be achieved through the exchange of good practices of sustainable water resources management and the improvement of groundwater management. The CREM project is composed of two modules:  GIZ module (CREM – GIZ) and BGR module (CREM – BGR):

  • The CREM-GIZ module focuses on knowledge exchange among the partner institutions, the exchange of IWRM good practices in particular
  • The CREM-BGR module focuses on “strengthening the knowledge of groundwater resources” and aims to provide the three partner countries’ governmental institutions with better access to updated data and well-developed methods for the sustainable management of groundwater resources.

Project Status

Expected Outcomes
GIZ Module:

  • Analysis of the water sector’s challenges in each of the three partner countries (imbalance, recourse to non-conventional waters, etc.)
  • Analysis of information systems in the three partner countries and recommendations for a better synergy and integration
  • Inventory on good irrigation practices for better valuation of the water resource
  • Elaboration of deeper studies on 3 major themes characterizing the region ( i.e. one theme per each country)
  • Exchange of good practices between the three partner countries.

BGR Module :

  • Development of new methodologies for better evaluation of groundwater abstraction
  • Optimization of piezometric networks
  • Data collection mechanism
  • Aquifer management models (one per each country) 
  • Capacity building
  • Knowledge exchange between the three partner countries.

The measure Maghreb's storytellers

Attached to the CREM project, the measure "Maghreb storytellers, actors of change for the preservation of water" implemented by the GIZ, in collaboration with the OSS, is an awareness project which consists of relying on the leading role of women in the transmission of non-waste values and the implementation of methods that save water resources. In this context, women from the 3 Maghreb countries (Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia), were accompanied and trained and the art of storytelling to enable them to inculcate these values to children, through stories.


  • Establishment of project implementing entities: designation of institutions and national focal points
  • Definition of demonstration pilots by the national institutions
  • Organization of training sessions on water management tools and information and good practices exchange
  • Recruitment of national, regional and international consultants for the assessment of the knowledge status on water resources management in each of the three countries, good practices exchange tools and remote sensing.