On June 21, the third Steering Committee meeting of the UNIDO/UNDP “ENPARD Technical Assistance: Producer Group and Value Chain Development” project, which is funded by the European Union and the Austrian Development Agency, was held at ENPARD office in Yerevan.
The Steering Committee meeting was chaired by Armen Harutyunyan, Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Armenia and John Barker, International Aid/Cooperation Officer of the Delegation of the European Union to Armenia.
The meeting was attended by Gunther Zimmer, Head of Office for the South Caucasus of the Austrian Development Agency, Nora Alanakyan, National Programme Officer of the Austrian Development Agency in Armenia, Frank Hartwich, Project Manager of the UNIDO/UNDP component of ENPARD and the Industrial Development Officer at UNIDO HQ, Anahit Simonyan, Head of UNIDO Operations in Armenia, Claire Medina, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, Severin Oman, UNIDO Project Coordinator of ENPARD project, Babken Babayan UNDP Component Leader of ENPARD project, Sergey Matevosyan, UNIDO Component Leader of ENPARD, as well as the counterparts of the project - Armen Martirosyan, UNDP Sustainable Growth and Resilience Portfolio Manager, Vahan Amirkhanyan, FAO Project Coordinator of ENPARD Technical Assistance project.
The attendees have highly appreciated the project performance with Frank Hartwich sharing his very positive impressions of the project thus far at the mid-point of implementation.
Severin Oman introduced the ENPARD project achievements, including having already planted 400 ha of the 547 ha of buckwheat planned to be planted in 2016, building and using four plastic tunnel greenhouses, supporting farmers to construct 10 processing factory buildings, procuring nearly all equipment for the processing cooperatives, submitting registration documents for 53 cooperatives to the State Registry, and the investment of 234,685 euro by the value addition groups and partners, and 52,500 euro by the primary production groups. The project has to a large degree already met the required gender/youth indicators as well. In addition to these groups, the UNIDO/UNDP is working with an additional 16 buckwheat primary producer groups and one additional value addition group.
The Steering Committee’s participants gave their high rating to the actions taken by the project’s counterparts and outlined the future plans.
About the project:
ENPARD (European Neighbourhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development) is financed by the European Union to ensure sustainable agricultural development in Armenia. One of its components “Producer Group and Value Chain Development” is implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the top-up funding from the Austrian Development Agency. The main objective of the component is to support agricultural cooperatives and engage producer groups effectively in value addition. Direct beneficiaries include agricultural producer groups and and their families, population along the value chains, households, consumers. The project has a special focus on women, youth, and other vulnerable groups. The Project main counterpart is the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Armenia. Project stakeholders are the territorial administrations and agricultural regional support centers of the target marzes, etc.The project was launched in 2015 and will last for 3 years.
UNIDO/UNDP of ENPARD is implemented in the following marzes of the Republic of Armenia: Shirak, Lori, Gegharkunik, Aragatsotn, Kotayk and Vayots Dzor. The project supports producer groups which are involved in the production and processing of the selected value chains, in particular, of high value field crops (with a focus on buckwheat), high value cheese, dried fruit & herbs, high value and non-traditional vegetables, berries/fruits.