From the very beginning of our activity we are closely collaborating with the Ministry of Environment and the following two state non-commercial organizations: “Hayantar” and “Dilijan National Park”, both operating under the aegis of the Ministry of Environment. With the Ministry, we are coordinating our various reforestation projects.
We made our cooperation “official” by signing a memorandum of understanding. Having as mission the conservation of the environment and natural resources of the Republic of Armenia, the prevention or reduction of harmful effects on forests, as well as the importance of sustainable forest management, conservation, protection and reproduction, the RA Minister of Environment Hakob Simidyan and Founding Director of My Forest Armenia Andre Gumuchdjian signed the memorandum on April 12.
Welcoming us at the Ministry of Environment, the Minister once again used the close cooperation between state agencies and private organizations in favor of the RA Government’s commitment to increase the forested areas in Armenia.
“I am convinced that the cooperation between our two structures will contribute to the implementation of appropriate measures and programs aimed at the protection, improvement, restoration and rational use of natural resources. I am sure this cooperation will be a good precedent, an example for other organizations. Efforts should be combined as much as possible to increase the forested areas in Armenia,” the Minister said.
Before signing of the memorandum, a number of priorities for bilateral cooperation were discussed: a wide range of issues related to the general state of forests in Armenia. Andre Gumuchdjian, the Founder and Director of My Forest Armenia, mentioned the importance of identifying the lands that are good for reforestation and keeping them for planting forests only, as the country desperately needs more forests. “We will do our best to engage more domestic and international actors in reforesting Armenia, and to grow lasting, permanent forests, and we are very enthusiastic about our cooperation with Armenia’s government to make this happen in a systematic way”.
The Minister underlined the importance of mechanisms for attracting investments in the field of environment, the steps aimed at equalizing green investments with investments in other spheres.
“We, as the policy-maker and the governing body of the sector and on the other hand you, as an organization active in the sector, have the same priorities. We share the same vision of the future. Therefore, I must ask you to fight for the advancement of the green agenda,” the Minister said.
- According to the memorandum, the Ministry of Environment and My Forest Armenia will cooperate in the following directions on mutually agreed terms․
- Organizing reforestation and afforestation works in pre-agreed, permitted areas defined by law,
- Organizing joint activities aimed at the protection and restoration of biodiversity in forest ecosystems,
- Implementation of environmental programs,
- Organizing training, conferences, round table discussions.
Within the framework of the memorandum, the parties will also implement educational programs of mutual interest.