Resultant from a constitutional provision, the National Water Resources Management System (Singreh), regulated by Law n.9.433 of 1997, considers the federative nature of Brazil. Besides that, the legislation brings new decentralization paradigms and use of economic tools for public management and participation in the decision-making process. The present essay, besides approaching issues of availability and demand of water resources in all 12 hydrographic regions of the country and the institutional design and functioning of Singreh in terms of legal and institutional arrangements, outlines the challenges of the water management in each hydrographic basin in the context of the federation. It also deals with the implementation process of technical and institutional tools of water resources in Paraíba do Sul River Basin - the first basin to implement water charges and operate a Water Agency in Brazil.
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