The introductory seminar directed to the ratification of the Minamata Convention on Mercury project took place in Yerevan

24-06-2015

Today the introductory seminaraimed to the ratification of the Minamata Convention on Mercury project took place in Yerevan and RA First Deputy Minister of Nature Protection Simon Papyan, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Switzerland Lukas Gasser, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Japan Mr. Eiji Taguchi, Training Advisor of UNITAR’s Chemicals and Waste Management Programme Georg Karlaganis took part in it.

The Republic of Armenia and 91 other countries signed “Minamata Convention on Mercury” in the Japanese city, Kumamoto on October 10, 2013. The objective of the Convention is to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds. At present 128 stateshave signed the Convention and 12 of them have ratified it. UNITAR due to the financial assistance of Swiss Government supports developing countries and those with transitional economies including Armenia to implement activities directed to accelerating ratification of the Minamata Convention.

RA First Deputy Minister of Nature Protection Simon Papyan on behalf of Minister Aramayis Grigoryan greeted the participants and stated: “The Republic of Armenia expresses gratitude to the Swiss Confederation for the occasional assistance and collaboration in regulating the chemicals and waste management sphere. This project is aimed at discovering the main problems of mercury in our country, legal regulations as well as analyses of ratification outcome and benefits. The convention will have a positive impact upon exchange of information related to mercury and mercury compounds, scientific, technical and legal information including toxic and ecotoxic nature as well as security issues.

Ambassador of Switzerland to Armenia Lukas Gasser in his turn greeting the participants mentioned the fact that the Swiss Government supports developing countries, particularly Armenia and is willing to advocate ecologically secure preservation of mercury and mercury compounds, ecologically secure dismissal of wastes containing mercury.

Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Japan Mr. Eiji Taguchi referring to the disastrous consequences of mercury pollution as a result of the accident having occurred in Minamata, noted: “The Japanese is well aware of the perils of mercury as it had a tragic experience, therefore it promotes the ratification of the Convention which will regulate the problems”.

It should be noted that the RA Ministry of Nature Protection has already started finding mercury main sources in Armenia, registration of products containing mercury and wastes, research analyses of environmental pollution with mercury and regulation of legal sector, thus resulting in the further ratification of the Convention.

Additionally, the latter will enable the acquisition of financial and technical assistance, particularly to acquire corresponding equipments aimed at determining mercury in biomaterials as well as create powers of recycling and neutralizing wastes containing with the objective to fulfill the undertaken responsibilities.

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