Tag Archives: kapan

15On 11 May, the EU Ambassador, Piotr Świtalski, participated in the opening of a facility that produces construction materials from plastic waste in Kapan. The facility was opened through the EU-funded “Introducing Construction Materials from Plastic Waste” (IES) Pilot Regional Development Programme (PRDP) project, which was launched in 2016. The facility will process plastic waste into materials using several technological processes and be mixed with sand on a production line.

2In order to supply the start-up with enough plastic waste, the project has created infrastructure for its separation and collection all the way down from Yeghegnadzor to Meghri, involving 9 communities in Vayots Dzor and Syunik marzes. The first batch of kerbstones and street tiles will be used to improve public spaces in those communities. The project’s budget is around €749,963, of which €509,978 has been provided by the European Union. The project is being implemented under the Pilot Regional Development Programme (PRDP) funded by the European Union and the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development of the Republic of Armenia. It is expected that the project will end in June 2019.

23Ambassador Świtalski congratulated on the opening of the facility: “I am very happy to come here to show the successful implementation of this innovative project. Three years ago we were deciding which projects should be included in PRDP. When I saw this proposal I started having big misgivings – can it work? And I am really glad that you have proved that it can work. I want to thank everyone involved in this project. I am proud that Kapan is taking a lead, Kapan is developing a project which is innovative and tackles environmental problems”.

ARS_4701Norayr Harutyunyan, the Head of the Project, presented the processes taking place at the facility: “At the end of 2018 we started the renovation of the facility, which lasted 2 months. We had already got all the equipment. On 3 March, we invited specialists from Russia to train our workers from the social security service. As a result, 11 of those trained have been working with us since 10 March. Workers have acquired skills, and all of the machines are working correctly. We have already got the first samples and will start the renovation in Kapan. We hope that, by the end of the year, we will work in two shifts and have up to 22 employees”.

^1D207D86EAEE6BB491C7CFDE4094651D40F8A12DD6944C043C^pimgpsh_fullsize_distrArmenia has not yet fully implemented the waste sorting policy. According to a study conducted by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in 2016, plastic containers, bottles and bags are the main polluters of water in Armenia. 5000 tonnes of polyethylene waste are collected in the country each year. Based on the average data for the recent years, more than 622 tonnes of polyethylene bags are imported to Armenia and 201 tonnes produced in the country annually.

However, in Kapan, Syunik marz, plastic waste will not only be sorted, but also prepared for recycling and re-use in the construction sector. This will become possible thanks to the “Introducing Construction Materials from Plastic Waste” (IES) Pilot Regional Development Programme (PRDP) project launched in 2016. For the first time in Armenia, a startup recycling facility is being established in the city, which will process plastic waste into materials after passing through several technological processes and being mixed with sand on a production line. In order to supply the startup with enough plastic waste, the project is creating infrastructure for its separation and collection all the way down from Yeghegnadzor to Meghri involving 9 communities in Vayots Dzor and Syunik marzes. The first batch of kerbstones and street tiles will be used to improve public spaces in those communities.

^15CBDCF9900DCC2D58A9D5019E16AF08BE0E2CA45F17CA137E^pimgpsh_fullsize_distrNorayr Harutyunyan, the Head of the Project, talked about the status and rationale of the project: “Plastic is durable and does not decompose in nature. Therefore, it causes great environmental damage. If you burn plastic waste it causes even more harm, as it produces dioxins, which destroys the nature and causes harm to the society. The Municipality of Kapan has initiated a project with the European Union aimed at collecting and recycling plastic waste. In December, we will obtain the pipeline. Plastic as a raw material will be received from the population”.

^DC82201E16193E9CF14D865AB23F0BBB1474495E6829E5D938^pimgpsh_fullsize_distrThe two-year project’s budget is around €749,963, of which €509,978 has been provided by the European Union. The project is being implemented under the Pilot Regional Development Programme (PRDP) funded by the European Union and the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development of the Republic of Armenia. More than 60 people will benefit from training and improve their chances in the labour market; 35 of them will receive permanent jobs. Preference will be given to qualified long-time job seekers, particularly to young men and women.

On 26 May Kapan celebrated Europe Day in the sun. People gathered under the values of peace and unity on Garegin Nzhdeh Square for music, dance, theatre, and prizes. Before the start of the celebrations, a presentation on the “Introducing Construction Materials from Plastic Waste” (IES) project was made. The Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski, and the Deputy Mayor of Kapan, Romik Sargsyan, were among the audience.

797A0261For the first time in Armenia, a start-up recycling facility will be established in Kapan, Syunik marz, which will process plastic waste into building materials. To supply the start-up with enough plastic waste, the project will create infrastructure for its separation and collect plastics from Yeghegnadzor to Meghri, including 9 communities in Vayots Dzor and Syunik marzes. The first batch of curbstones and street tiles created will be used to improve public spaces in those communities involved. The two-year project has a total budget of €749,963 (the EU contribution is €509,978).

ARS_4414In his speech the EU Ambassador highlighted that this year Europe Day celebrations had taken on a lighter, festive character: ‘We are so glad to be here again and celebrate Europe Day. This place is very symbolic for us – we consider Kapan to be the southeastern gate to Europe. Coming to Kapan is a must for us in our road map. Just a while ago I was introduced to a new project which was launched in Kapan concerning plastic waste processing. The EU is happy to be helpful in cleaning up the environment and creating new jobs. This is only the beginning – there will be more projects like this in Kapan and elsewhere in Syunik marz’.

797A0540Deputy Mayor Sargsyan welcomed citizens and guests to the celebrations: ‘Europe has been in Kapan for a long time. We have been cooperating with the European Union for many years. We acknowledge the ecological problems in Syunik marz and are now implementing a project to separate plastic from waste and benefit from this. We already have a garbage truck and rubbish bins for plastic in Kapan. Thanks to the ecological component of the project, we will keep our city clean. The social component will create jobs and create a new culture. I am confident that our joint efforts will yield wonderful results’.

ARS_5633On the next day the last regional Europe Day celebration took place in Yeghegnadzor. Residents of Vayots Dzor marz gathered in the city’s amphitheatre to participate in different activities: enjoy good music and dance, participate in various competitions, win surprise gifts, and taste different European dishes.  Ambassador Świtalski and the Mayor of Yeghegnadzor, Davit Harutyunyan, welcomed the guests and gave their congratulations for Europe Day.

ARS_5333Ambassador Świtalski thanked the Mayor and his team for hosting the event: ‘Thank you so much for coming and sharing with us the joy of Europe Day. It is an honour to be in Yeghegnadzor on the eve of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of Armenia’s independence. Let me congratulate Armenia and its citizens on this occasion. The motto of this year’s celebration is “Europe is here”. Europe is indeed very much in Yeghegnadzor. We want to conduct more projects in this beautiful city and this marz. We feel very much at home here thanks to your hospitality’.

ARS_5345Mayor Harutyunyan thanked the EU Delegation for celebrating Europe Day in Yeghegnadzor: ‘I am full of joy that Europe Day is being celebrated in our city for the second year in a row. It is lovely that our citizens have had the opportunity to get acquainted with EU-funded projects. I hope our future cooperation will continue to be effective and that we will be able to implement projects in different areas’.

^7DDA8AFE5020AA3C982A3A493A5E7763BE32FCF15DE2B6ED5F^pimgpsh_fullsize_distrEvery year Europe celebrates Europe Day: the celebration of peace and unity. 9 May marks the anniversary of the historical ‘Schuman deceleration’. On 11 May 2018, Europe Day celebrations in Armenia were officially launched. In the morning, Armenia’s President, Armen Sarkissian visited the office of the European Union in Armenia. The President congratulated the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski and the staff of the office and in their person the large EU family on the occasion of Europe Day and wished them peace and prosperity. The parties exchanged views on the agenda of Armenia-EU relations and programmes which are implemented in Armenia through the assistance of the European Union.
This year, Europe Day celebrations will be held in 6 Armenian cities (Ijevan, Hrazdan, Gyumri, Vanadzor, Kapan, and Yeghegnadzor) and will be concluded in Yerevan on 2 June. The participants of outdoor public events will have the opportunity to learn more about EU-funded projects in Europe and Armenia, to get acquainted with projects’ achievements, to enjoy good music, to participate in various competitions, to win many surprise gifts, and to taste different European dishes. The embassies of 11 EU Member States accredited in Armenia will join in hosting cultural and entertainment events.

ARS_7121_Later that day, Ambassador Świtalski announced the launch of the pan-European holiday in Armenia during a press conference and informed about the upcoming events: ‘We consider Armenia as a member of the larger European family. I invite the Armenian pubic to join us during Europe Day celebrations, which we consider to be a shared occasion, a shared opportunity to show that we belong to the same family. This year, for the first time, Ijevan and Hrazdan will host these celebrations. We will also visit, as usual, Gyumri, Vanadzor, Kapan, Yeghegnadzor and, of course, Yerevan. As always, we dedicate many of our activities to youth, the future of this country. Europe Day is about values; in recent days Armenian youth demonstrated that they believe in the values of democracy, the rule of law, an independent, fair judiciary, etc. This is something that constitutes the common basis of our relations. Soon we will start the provisional implementation of the EU-Armenia Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA), which is very important. We are looking forward to joint work with all our stakeholders’.

ARS_7052_The launch of Europe Day activities kicked off with a fashion exhibition organised jointly with the Fashion and Design Chamber of Armenia. 16 fashion designers presented exceptional clothing collections created especially for this occasion, inspired by the European flag. With EU support under the EU4Business initiative the ‘Business Club for Impact’ joined up with the ‘Fashion and Design Chamber’ to establish the Business Club for Fashion and Design in February 2018. This unites more than 60 individual designers who for the first time have created a joint platform for the fashion and design industry, aimed at promoting more knowledge and business skills in the world of design. The Business Club is funded by the “Support to SME Development in Armenia” (SMEDA) project, co-funded by the EU and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. It is being implemented by GIZ’s Private Sector Development in the South Caucasus Programme.

Southern Armenia has hosted Europe Day events, with the EU Delegation stopping for celebrations in Kapan and Goris (Syunik marz), and Yeghegnadzor (Vayots Dzor marz).


11On 19 May Kapan welcomed its guests with sunny weather. In the morning, the Deputy Head of Cooperation Section of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Gregory Tsouris, held a meeting with Ashot Hayrapetyan, the Mayor of Kapan. The meeting was followed by an Information Fair on Garegin Nzhdeh Square. Nearly 10 stalls presented EU-funded projects to the residents of Kapan. A DJ provided music while people used this opportunity to learn more about the European Union and its activities; their children enjoyed themselves in a special booth for kids. Tsouris and Hayrapetyan also toured the booths and welcomed guests.

1Tsouris introduced the concept of Europe Day to Kapan residents: ‘It is a great pleasure to be in Kapan. We are celebrating Europe Day here for the second time. Europe Day is an important milestone for all Europeans; it is a day to celebrate our common values. You have the opportunity to see some of the projects we are implementing in Armenia. It is also an opportunity to discuss our cooperation and speak about the future. I want to thank the Mayor for the support we received organising the celebration and for the warm welcome’.

111Mayor Hayrapetyan was grateful that Kapan had been included: ‘It is an honour for us to implement projects in Kapan with the help of the European Union. Now we have a two-year project which started in January. Plastic waste will start being used in construction in Kapan – plastic waste will be a raw material. As a result, we will establish a culture of sorting plastic waste and find opportunities to benefit from it. The EU’s support is great and we hope to have more ambitious projects’.

The children of Kapan’s Aram Khachaturian music school performed the Anthem of Europe to get the crowd for special guests Hayk Petorsyan and Masha Mnjoyan, who made sure the people of Kapan enjoyed the concert.


2On 20 May, Europe Day reached another city in Syunik Marz. The morning started with a meeting between the Head of EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski, and Vachagan Adunts, the Mayor of Goris. Grigor Tatevatsi Square hosted an Information Fair in windy, stormy weather. However, the weather swiftly turned and nearly 10 stalls then presented EU-funded projects to adults, while local children learned about the EU through drawing and other games. Soon they were joined by Ambassador Świtalski and Mayor Adunts.

22Ambassador Świtalski introduced Europe Day to the people of Goris: ‘We are happy to be in this beautiful garden town, where the most delicious beans are grown, to celebrate Europe Day together. There are several dimensions to these celebrations: firstly, we want Armenia to feel a part of the wider European family, as Europe Day is celebrated in all member states of the EU, as well as our neighbours. Secondly, we want to present the EU flag and our activities to people all over Armenia. Therefore, it is a great occasion for us to come to beautiful towns like Goris, show what we do in Armenia, and invite you to be more active in our projects. Thirdly, we want to promote different types of activity like music and sport’.

The anthem of Europe was performed before Hayk Petrosyan and Masha Mnjoyan. Despite the wet weather, the crowd filled the square to dance and sing along. While people were singing and dancing in the square, Ambassador Switalski and the mayor launched the European Night of Museums. The EU Delegation to Armenia opened an exhibition of paintings from the #Europe4Peace project at the Aksel Bakunts House Museum.

222The Ambassador highlighted the importance of the European Night of Museums: ‘It is very important that Armenia participates in this Europewide movement of museum nights. The initiative started in 2005 in France and was picked up by a number of international organisations, including the Council of Europe. At that time I was working with the Council of Europe in Strasbourg. I never thought this beautiful initiative would spread so far to one day be embraced Armenia. We normally associate museums with buildings where old artefacts are stationed; but in fact museums are centres of learning’.

For #Europe4Peace pupils from art schools in Armenia were invited to create topical paintings associated with Europe and peace. Final selected paintings from 98 schools, including from Goris, were selected by a non-official jury. These paintings were first displayed during the Europe Day classical concert on 6 May, which opened Europe Day celebrations in Armenia.


On 21 May Yeghegnadzor was excited to host Europe Day for the first time. Celebrations started with an Information Fair at the Yeghegnadzor amphitheatre. More than 10 stalls presented EU-funded projects, giving visitors the opportunity to discover Europe, the European Union, and its projects in Armenia. Ambassador Świtalski and the Mayor of Yeghegnadzor, Davit Harutyunyan, also visited the booths.

3The Ambassador celebrated Yeghenadzor’s inclusion in the celebrations: ‘It is the first time that the EU has come to Yeghegnadzor to celebrate Europe Day. I hope that we are starting a beautiful tradition. I wanted to greet the citizens of the town, in particular the young generation. For us, Yeghegnadzor is a city of kind and hospitable people, the capital of Vayots Dzor, the smallest marz in Armenia, but with the biggest heart. We are grateful that we can celebrate Europe Day here in Armenia together. We fell at home here and invite you to enjoy this day, a day of joy’.

After the Anthem of Europe the Information Fair was followed by an open-air concert with Hayk Petrosyan and Masha Mnjoyan.

This year’s Europe Day 2016 celebrations in Armenia have taken place in five marzes and will culminate in Yerevan on 5 June.
On 18 May 2016, the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski, paid a regional visit to Gegharkunik marz. He was accompanied by, among others, Nicolas Faye, Deputy Head of Mission of the French Embassy, as well as José Medina Navarro, Deputy Head of Cooperation Section of the EU Delegation. The delegation began its visit at the ENPARD project in Tsovaghyugh village meeting with buckwheat farmers; the local authorities of Tsovaghyugh village; Gurgen Martirosyan, the Mayor of Gavar; and the Governor of Gegharkunik, Rafik Grigoryan.
13230116_1026165467437382_5401231540686557703_nAt the end of the visit, the delegation met with civil society organisations and media representatives from Gegharkunik discussing, among other topics, increased EU cooperation with the regions, how to combat corruption, and the role SMEs can play in economic development. On the same day, Europe Day celebrations were held in Gavar for the first time. The Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski heralded the importance of the event for the town: ‘We are celebrating Europe Day for you, for young people in particular. We will be working together with your government and CSOs to help you to find a better future here in your beautiful country. I know very well that life is not simple in Gavar, but we hope very much that this evening you, together with us, will think about hope and a better future’. After the speech, Ambassador Świtalski awarded special prizes to the winners of the EU-Armenia cooperation quiz. In Gavar, the audience was so excited that they asked for the celebrations to continue – despite the rain!
On 21 May 2016, the EU Delegation to Armenia’s team was on the road again, this time to the south of Armenia. Ambassador Świtalski encouraged the efforts to combat gender-based violence in Syuniq marz coordinated by the Goris Women’s Development Resource Center Foundation. During the meeting, the women signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the government and civil society on fighting gender-based violence. Ambassador Świtalski stressed the EU’s commitment on this issue: ‘The EU is behind you in fighting gender-based violence – as part of our human rights budget sector support programme; we have agreed with the government that it will finalise new comprehensive legislation on domestic violence by the end of 2016. We are actively engaging with the government, encouraging it to sign up to the Istanbul Convention’.
13237734_1027649920622270_840783055480861527_nOn the same day, the Ambassador launched the first EU-funded “Euroclub” in Goris. The EU delegation will open Euroclubs in all marzes of Armenia to inform and educate young people about the EU and EU-Armenia relations. The initiative will include assistance in establishing long-term partnerships with European youth NGOs, applying and obtaining EU resources, and supporting Armenian youth aspirations for strengthening relations with the EU.
Additionally, Europe Day celebrations took place in Goris for the first time. Ambassador Świtalski opened the proceedings and spoke about the role of the EU: ‘I’m glad we are here in one of the most beautiful cities in Armenia. We are committed to support the efforts of Armenians to build a better society. The EU wants to help you to have better education, good jobs and to live in peace. Times are not easy for all Armenians, let’s hope for peace, for development and let’s enjoy this evening’.
On 22 May, Ambassador Świtalski made his first official visit to Kapan. On his way to Kapan, the Ambassador and Jerzy Nowakowski, the Ambassador of Poland to Armenia, took a ride on “The Wings of Tatev” cable car and paid a visit to the historic Tatev monastery, which is situated on the edge of the spectacular Vorotan river gorge. The two ambassadors were joined by a Polish choir, which celebrated Europe Day by singing the European Anthem and a couple of traditional Polish songs. The group was then briefed about Polish support for marking hiking trails in the beautiful surroundings and were served a delicious, homemade Polish cake. Upon arrival to Kapan, Ambassadors Świtalski and Nowakowski were met by the Mayor of Kapan, Ashot Hayrapetyan, and members of his team. Among the topics discussed were economic development in the regions, a feasibility study of the Armenian-Iranian Meghri border crossing point, potential EU support to innovative plastic disposal, seasonal migration, employment opportunities for women, and historical links between Europe and Armenia.
13240582_1028341080553154_8261934550474347955_nOn the same day, citizens from Kapan and the surrounding villages were in a great mood as they prepared to join the EU Delegation’s team at another outdoor Armenian concert experience. Ambassador Świtalski expressed his pleasure of making his first visit to Kapan: ‘I salute this great city of Davit Bek – a city of courage and resilience. I salute Kapan, the city on the border of Europe, which is also a gate to Europe. I would like to thank the Mayor of Kapan and the municipality for helping us to organise this concert tonight. We want to build a common future between the EU and Armenia based on common values. Our Europe Day celebrations 2016 are dedicated to youth and the future generation; this is why we are using the slogan “EU for youth”. The EU believes that young people are the future of Armenia. You are full of talent and very gifted; the EU wants to contribute by offering better opportunities for the younger generation here, we want to contribute to better job creation and better education. We want young Armenians to see a better future here and not outside of its borders. Most of all, however, we would like to work with the international community to ensure stability and peace for Armenia and the whole region’.