Modern river basin management techniques are gaining popularity in China to effectively manage increasingly vulnerable water resources. China has several large river basins, with a variety of resource conditions and development challenges. River basins in China are facing aggravated water pollution, and development and management issues. In dealing with these issues, and in line with the evolution of modern concepts of river basin management, the 2002 Water Law of People's Republic of China for the first time defines river basin management institutions and functions, the legal status of river basin management organizations in China, and strengthens the administrative rights of river basin management organizations. However, although it is a good beginning, it is far from perfect. There are still several key issues which need to be addressed in the future, such as: function clarification, relationships between river basin management and jurisdictional management, participation, and coordination and integration of natural resources management.

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