Information Meeting on Progress on RECP Component under the EU4Environment Action in Armenia
The Information Meeting took place on 30th of April in Yerevan and was opened by the Deputy Minister of Environment Ms. Anna Mazmanyan, H.E. Ambassador of European Union to Armenia Ms. Andrea Wiktorin, UNIDO Country Representative Ms. Anahit Simonyan, Director General of Enterprise Armenia Mr. Levon Ohanesyan.
Ms. Anna Mazmanyan has mentioned that economic development and investments which are at stake for promotion of economic growth and improvement of investment climate, should also have positive environmental impact, going in line with environmental, green and sustainable solutions, and RECP is a perfect combination of these practices especially for small and medium business.
H.E. Ms. Wiktorin has underscored support of EU to green development policies and projects in Armenia, in line with priorities of EU Green Deal, where circular economy and resource efficiency were focusing on support and development of SME sector, prioritizing green development and its practical application through green, environmentally friendly action resulting in sustainability and development of the country. Ms. Wiktorin has spotted that the EU4Envronment RECP component is a good example of practical application of mainstreaming circular economy in Armenia through green SME support practices.
Mr. Levon Ohanesyan, Director General of Enterprise Armenia, in his opening has stressed the importance of the activities in the SME sector which hopefully will have a chain effect and will contribute to the development of Armenia's green economy.
UNIDO Project Coordinator Ms. Carolina Gonzales Muller has presented the objectives of the EU4Environment project, explaining the target areas of the action, implemented by different development partners, and their co-operation strategies. Methodology of the project, as well as RECP tools, examples and benefits of RECP applied by different EU companies were introduced by UNIDO Technical Expert Mr. Johannes Fresner. Ms. Anahit Simonyan, UNIDO Country Representative has mentioned the importance of this project assisting SMEs to develop their environmental behavior and benefit from resource efficient and cleaner production audits implemented in practice, resulting in concrete results demonstrated by project in different industries.
Ms. Nune Harutyunyan presented the Snapshot of RECP actions and challenges, RECP activities in 55 SMEs, and their results under EU funded EaP Green RECP demonstration project, as well as current activities of EU4Environment Action RECP component, outlining good partnership between the project and private sector. SME are currently benefitting from RECP assessments in terms of cutting waste and promoting waste recycling, reducing CO2 emissions, costs for energy, water and input materials, as well as financial resources as a result of RECP audits.
The meeting has discussed potential use and application of RECP practices based on food/agriculture (included fish farming), construction materials and chemical (including plastic) industries experiences, and on receiving recommendations on partnership possibilities with other stakeholder organizations. Project Technical RECP experts Ms. Dshkhuhi Sahakyan and Mr. Tigran Sekoyan have presented the results of monitoring missions conducted to EaP Green SMEs, where interesting ideas and significant progress has been achieved by Rozfrud, Lucia Food, Elbat and Lukashin co-operative in installation of solar panels, technological changes in production equipment, which initiated the raise of production volumes and expansion to new markets.
Project experts have presented the quick scan assessments and results of monitoring missions, presenting interesting solutions on energy efficiency, material, water and waste management solutions used for each assessed industry. During the meeting representatives of SME from Elbat, Rozfrud, Lucia food, Magnon, Yerpin agricultural cooperative and other SMEs have spoken about the practical benefits of RECP audits and their results delivered by the team. Meeting was successful in terms of involvement of new SMEs and exchange of successful experiences and potential collaboration between different actors, which used information meeting as a good networking opportunity and future partnership.
The meeting underscored the important parallels in application of economic development strategies and SME support schemes in line with environmental objectives of the country, importance of focusing on sustainable development through aligning the actions in line with EU Green deal objectives. Stakeholders have discussed importance of RECP benefits in its real application, such as environmental, economic and social benefits for businesses which pursued RECP replication, including waste minimization, elaboration of innovative products from recycled materials and waste, water and energy saving technologies applied in SMEs as a result of RECP assessments conducted by project.