United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is the specialized agency of the United Nations mandated to promote and accelerate inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID) in developing countries and economies in transition. Established in 1966 with headquarters in Vienna and recognized as a specialized agency in 1985, UNIDO aims to promote industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability.
The Organization is recognized as a specialized and efficient provider of key services meeting the interlinked challenges of reducing poverty through productive activities, integrating developing countries in global trade through trade capacity-building, fostering environmental sustainability in industry, and improving access to clean energy.
UNIDO Desk in Armenia
UNIDO Desk in Armenia was established in 2005. However, cooperation with the Government of Armenia, particularly with the Ministry of Economy and Ministry of Nature Protection started much earlier with a provision of technical assistance in different areas, including investment promotion, SME development, hazardous waste management, cleaner production. A Country Needs Assessment was undertaken in 2008 with a view to identify priority areas requiring UNIDO's technical assistance.
UNIDO's Current Activities in Armenia
UNIDO is currently implementing technical assistance projects aimed at:
UNIDO pays a special attention to the development of public and private partnership in the above-mentioned areas.
Investment and Export Promotion
In order to improve the competitiveness of export-oriented industries and ensure their modernization UNIDO provides technical assistance in the development of textile and garment sectors of the light industry aiming to strengthen the production and export potential of the Armenian companies and increase their competitiveness in the international market.
SME Development and Job Creation
With financial assistance from the Austrian Government and together with the Small and Medium Entrepreneurship Development National Center (SME DNC) of Armenia UNIDO supports young start-ups in Shirak, Lori, Tavush and Gegharkunik marzes by providing entrepreneurial trainings and financial assistance through local banks for young entrepreneurs to start their own businesses.
UNIDO implements another project aimed at supporting start-up entrepreneurs from vulnerable groups in communities of Kotayk and Gegharkunik marzes, with financial assistance from Japanese Government through the UN Human Security Trust Fund (UNHSTF).
Support to the Agro-Processing Producer Groups
With the financial support from the European Union (EU) and Austrian Government technical assistance will be rendered to the producer groups aiming to establish and develop agro-processing and production capacities in remote and marginalized regions by supporting the creation of cooperatives and promoting production export.
Development of alternative and renewable energy is always at the forefront of the cooperation agenda between UNIDO and the Government of Armenia. UNIDO supports the development of alternative energy forms, particularly the use of biogas in Geghamasar and Pambak communities of Gegharkunik marz through installation of biogas equipment and provision of technical assistance for its operation.
Clean Technology and Innovations
With financial assistance by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) UNIDO has initiated the Global Cleantec Innovation Programme for SMEs in Armenia. The Programme aims at promoting cleantech startup ecosystem in Armenia to support innovative cleantech business ideas and turn them into viable businesses. It will help to increase the competitiveness of SMEs and develop coordination mechanisms aimed at fostering clean technology innovations. Additionally, the Programe will seek to strengthen the policy and institutional framework for promoting programmes aimed at the development of cleantech innovations in Armenia.
Cleaner Production and Resource Efficiency
UNIDO has provided technical assistance in the introduction of cleaner production methods in mining, chemical and food industries. Currently in the framework of the EU-supported Eastern Partnership EAP GREEN initiative UNIDO is implementing activities aimed at promoting resource efficiency and cleaner production in Armenia, in particular in the priority industry sectors, such as agro-food processing, chemicals and construction materials. The adopted methodology is one of the most important preconditions in the development of Armenian enterprises and in increasing their competitiveness in the international market.
Support to the Implementation of the Stockholm Convention on the Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)
As an implementing agency of the GEF-funded projects on Stockholm Convention on POPs, UNIDO continues to provide its technical expertise and assistance to the Government of Armenia by preparing National Reports and updates for the Secretariat, as well as introducing Best Available Techniques and Best Environmental. Practices (BAT/BEP) for the sustainable management of hazardous waste, namely reduction of POPs from open-burning sources.
Supporting the Implementation of the Minamata Convention on Mercury
UNIDO has initiated a preliminary assessment in Armenia aimed at strengthening national capacities in ratifying and fulfilling its obligations under the Minamata Convention, as well as enabling strategic decision making and prioritizing areas for future interventions.
UNIDO has initiated a preliminary assessment of the Minamata Convention by Armenia, which aims to strengthen the capacity of national obligations under the Minamata Convention ratification and implementation of future interventions for strategic decision making and the selection of priority areas.
Support to the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol on Ozone Depleting Substances
At its 57th meeting in 2009, the Executive Committee of the Multilateral Fund, under the Montreal Protocol, approved the institutional strengthening project for Armenia. The project assists in the strengthening and effective functioning of the National Ozone Unit by adopting alternative technologies for preservation of ozone layer, establishing a reliable system to collect and monitor data on ozone depleting substances, their imports, exports and production and raising public awareness on the issue.