Terms of Reference

1.  April 1995




"If all the delegations, from all over the world, had each brought a bucketful of water, this water, together with our tears, would have filled the Aral Sea". (heard in 1991 in Aral-region). It is correct that the situation in and around the Aral Sea has been examined and analysed from experts since 1965. Many reports have been written, and lots of conferences have been held about the problem. So far nothing has been done!

But since June 1994 there is a change. The UN, The World Bank and many western governments (among them the Danish) have iniciated an ambitious project to improve the conditions for the people around Aral, and maybe even restore some part of the sea itself by building a dam between "Little-" and "Big Aral". These plans are very expensive (1 1/2 mia. US$ for the first phase in a 25 years program) and wide-ranging. The programme focuses on social- and health problems in the region and the problem with how to get more water to Aral by repairing the channel-system of "Syr-Darya" River.

But in the two (from originally 19) remaining fishery co-operatives in the Little Aral-region there are important problems that need less wide-ranging solutions. These people have been waiting for Aral to improve since 1975, and they have still got the hope. Lots of families now depend on "nomadic fishery" (in Balkhas), but they have, as they say, been looking in the horizon, knowing that Aral would one day return. Justice claims that these fishermen should catch the first sturgeon in Aral.



This project is intended to focus on the Aral problems from "a fishermans point of

view", and it will try to provide some assistance to daily life for the communities mentioned above. In the summer of 1994 a Danish delegation visited the Northern part of Aral

Sea-region, supported by the private Danish foundation "Solhvervsfonden". The idea was mainly to establish and extend already existing contacts in the area, and thus prepare a more detailed and specific programme for co-operation between Denmark and the Aral fishermen. The assistance that we can provide, specifically in the Kazalinsk-Aralsk-Djambul area seems to be this (divided in two phases):


Phase 1 : August/September 1995.

The establishing of contacts between the Aral people of fishery, and the Danish fishery industry and organisations, public institutions and environmental organisations etc. We imagine a 14-20 days visit in Denmark from leaders and chairmen from Aral-region:

-The chairman of "Reim" and "Kysylsjar" kolkhoz Mr. Daukara Aimagambetov.

-The chairman of "Djambul" kolkhoz Mr. Zanobaj Khabanov.

-The chairman of the fishery factory in Aralsk, Mr. Adilbek I. Aimbetov.

-The mayor of Aralsk, Mr.

-The chairman of the Kazakh fishery Institute in Balkhas Mr. Vjageslav Tsoi.

-Leader of the Institute of Micro Biology, Almaty University Mr. Makhambet Tairov. (Kazakh organizer and interpreter).

It is our belief that this delegation would represent the optimum contact in the Northern Aral-region, in order to make detailed arrangements (concerning "Phase 2") and establish contacts that we can not yet foresee.

We will apply for financial support for this visit at the Danish foundation of democracy ("Demokratifonden"). During the visit it will be discussed, and an agreement will be made, how to carry out Phase 2 of the project. For this purpose there will be arranged a number of meetings with a wide range of firms and organisations, including DANIDA (department of the Danish Foreign Ministry).


Phase 2: April 1996.

One of the major problems in the area is the lack of fishing equipment. In the summer of 1994 there was an interest among the Djambul-fishermen for the Danish-seine fishing ("Snurrevod"), which is especially fit for the cathing of flounder.

Phase 2 is meant to offer the Aral fishermen an opportunity to encounter this typical Danish way of fishing and purchase some equipment suitable for the specific needs in the region. (We are aware that this project cannot exterminate all equipment-problems in the area). The idea is to invite about 12 people from the fishery communities and from industry in Aralsk. They will stay in Denmark for a month, and there will be a complete programme especially concerning catching, preparation and distribution of fish in Denmark.

We will apply at DANIDA for the financing of this phase. Further details for the visit will, as mentioned, be arranged during the 1995 visit, and in the time between the two.



The responsible in Kazakhstan is mr. Makhambet M. Tairov, in co-operation with the representatives of the 1995-delegation. Mr.Tairov has a broad knowledge about the fishery situation in Kazakhstan, and about the situation in Denmark.

The responsible in Denmark is mr. Kurt Bertelsen Christensen (KBC) in co-operation with the Danish organisation "Denmark-Kazakhstan society" and the "Fiskerikollektivet af 1978". KBC is a former fisherman with experience in Kazakhstan and the former Sovjet Union. In 1991 he visited Aral-region, and the society was founded and KBC is committee member. Since 1991 Kazakh groups have been invited to Denmark and Danish groups to Kazakhstan. From 1988-1993 KBC worked in the Fiskerikollektiv, arranging, among other things, exhibitions in Poland, The Baltic states and Russia and conferences in Denmark for people around The Baltic Sea.


Adr. and phone in Denmark :

"Fiskerikollektiv af 1978", Lundenvej 7, 8585 Glęsborg. Phone +45 86387725