Armenian National Program Advisory Committee’s Second Meeting Discusses Forest Law Enforcement and Governance
Yerevan (Armenia), January 15, 2014— Today, the second meeting of the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) Forest Law Enforcement and Governance (FLEG II) National Program Advisory Committee (NPAC) was held at the World Bank Yerevan Office. At the meeting the implementing organizations (IOs) presented their planned activities for the first year of Program implementation and sought the advice of NPAC members to facilitate collaboration and synergy with other on-going Projects and Programs in the field.
The participants were presented with the main results of the ENPI FLEG II First Steering Committee meeting organized last October, where the Country Work Plans (CWP) for each participating country were approved.
The parties present at the meeting identified some of the priority activities for Phase II of the Program that needed to be discussed distinctly, as these were facilitating recent developments in the forest sector, based on experience and lessons learnt by the Implementing Organizations in the course of the program. The discussed activities fell within these five identified topics, to be elaborated upon throughout Phase II of the EU financed ENPI FLEG II program:
1. There is a need for legal and institutional review and reforms, due to the current quite significant discrepancies in different legislative documents regarding the forestry field.
2. Human resource capacity should be built to address FLEG issues. There is a need for an education and knowledge exchange (forestry specialists, journalists, university lecturers and students), and training of trainers (TOT) programs. Education and experience exchange, both within country between sector specialists, journalists, and academia, and internationally between ENPI FLEG countries and with EU member states, with regards to relevant EU processes.
3. Public awareness and public monitoring of the forestry sector.
4. Strengthening sustainable forest management in Armenia through activities with model forest units such as forest protected areas and activities for sustainable use of forest resources with the involvement of adjacent communities.
5. Improving FLEG planning and monitoring at the national, regional (local) and international levels.
The Chair of the NPAC meeting, Mr. Martun Matevosyan, the Head of the State organization ”Hayantar”, and the FLEG II Focal point in Armenia, said: “It is important to once again mention the significance of the continuity of the Program, which allows broadening the scope of activities and ensures sustainability of results”.
The participants of the meeting included: representatives of the SNCO “Hayantar”, the EU Delegation, the Ministry of Nature Protection (MONP), the Ministry of Agriculture, the State Forest Monitoring Centre, NGOs (Transparency International, Armenian Forests, Sustainable Human Development), the Forest Research and Education Centre, The Regional Environmental Centre for the Caucasus, Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), TGS company, IUCN, WB, WWF.
The activities of the ENPI FLEG II CWP will be implemented over the next 3.5 years, covering the five priority areas identified by the Republic of Armenia. The activities are designed in a way to cover and build on the successful results of the Phase I of the FLEG program, as well as to address priorities identified for Phase II. The progress of the program implementation will be presented and discussed at the National Program Advisory Committee (NPAC) meetings on a regular basis, in order to make recommendations when and if a justified need for adjustments to the CWP occurs.