The workshop on Biosphere reserve concept in Armenia 


On November 20-21 the workshop dedicated to the UNESCO’s Biosphere reserve concept and the consultation over perspectives for its localization in Armenia kicked off in “Erebuni Plaza” Business Center. 

The 2-day event was organized within the scopes of “Support  Programme for Protected Areas-Armenia” project executed by the RA Ministry of Nature Protection and financed by Germany-KFW Development Bank. It is implemented with the support of the international consulting consortium: GITEC-IGIP GmbH, a leading consulting company in Germany. 

To hold the workshop, the representatives of Germany’s “Michael Zukov” foundation and international experts with extensive experience in biosphere reserve sector were invited by the RA Ministry of Nature Protection, who will present international practice during the two-day workshop, thus getting acquainted with the perspectives for the concept localization in Armenia, submit their propositions and position over future development opportunities for biosphere reserve concept in Armenia.  

At the opening ceremony of the workshop RA Minister of Nature Protection Artsvik Minasyan and Project Manager of “Support  Programme for Protected Areas-Armenia” Hovhannes Hovhannisyan   said welcome speeches. Uli Grabner, the representative of the foundation, touched upon the essence of the workshop and plans of Germany’s “Michael Zukov” foundation to be accomplished in Armenia. 
“In the last decades, Armenia has tried to sufficiently ensure baseline, legal and institutional prerequisites, that are essential or can make a contribution to the development of UNESCO’s biosphere reserve concept in Armenia.

We realize that our perspective development ideas can seem slightly ambitious, however we are sure that we can make them a reality, as international community and authoritative organizations support us, by highly appreciating our readiness, Armenian nature, natural heritage, rich biodiversity, community characteristics and culture”: Artsvik Minasyan stressed in his speech.
Project Manager Hovhannes Hovhannisyan expressed the hope that during the 2-day workshop there will be efficient discussions, exchange of ideas and experience. 
“We also anticipate a plan of actions in the future or in other words, the outline of a roadmap: a consultation over Biosphere reserve concept, the submission of international best practice and possible issues, the concept application in Armenia, necessary   conditions and pinpointing of further steps and actions. In this context, we remarkably have high expectations from our partners of “Michael Zukov” foundation, one of the leading international companies in this sphere, invited international experts as well”: The project manager of “Support Programme for Protected Areas-Armenia” noted.

Uli Grabner, the Executive Director of “Mikael Zukov” foundation, illustrated the essence of the two-day workshop and plans to be fulfilled in Armenia. In the course of these two days there will be reflected upon several issues related to biosphere reserves, international experience, development perspectives of biosphere reserves in Armenia, including the possibility of establishing a potential biosphere reserve in Syunik Region, consultations will be held over the strategy directed to communication and awareness raising. The workshop provides a great opportunity to join together local and international interested sides and key partners, aimed at creating a common platform for the future development of biosphere reserve concept in Armenia and the mutually beneficial cooperation.