RA Agriculture Ministry has developed the draft protocol resolution 'Concept Paper on Forest Sector Reforms', while the Armenian Government has posted for circulation on www.e-draft.am website, which proposes to delegate the governance of all the forest areas, including specially protected areas of nature to one body.
Currently 'ArmForest' SNCO of RA Nature Protection Ministry performs governance functions on around 75% of forest land areas. Around 25% of the forests, which are specifically protected areas of nature, are governed by RA Nature Protection Ministry. According to the draft concept paper, 'ArmForest' SNCO will transform to an individual governmental competent body governing all state forests - State Forest Committee. Regional organizations under the supervision of State Forest Committee will operate through the reformation of 'Forestry Enterprise' branches of 'ArmForest' SNCO, as well as the reformation of 'Sevan' National Park, 'Dilijan' National Park, 'Arpi Litch' National Park, 'Khosrov Reserve' State Forest, 'Zikatar' Environmental Center, 'Zangezour' Biospheric Complex operating under the supervision of RA Nature Protection Ministry. State Forest Inspection Service will be formed under the immediate supervision of the Committee as a body implementing inspection of forests.
'Sustainable Caucasus' Project (SCOPE) National Coordinator Armen Gevorgyan said that he doesn't support the idea of including the specifically protected areas of nature in the committee.
'I do think they are different objects both in legal, target and operational regards and their unification in the same body is not expedient. We shall guide with the clear formulation of functions and responsibilities and all the weak points in the forest sector governance shall have state control,' Armen Gevorgyan said.
'The idea is not bad, but it should be substantiated. Currently, we are experiencing a lack of staff and it's not clear how this problem will be solved. Eventually, they should govern the forest,' “Mainstreaming Sustainable Land and Forest Management in Mountain Landscapes of North-Eastern Armenia” project Technical Task Leader Hovik Sayadyan said.
EcoLur will continue publishing opinions on this issue.
16:11 September 26, 2017