Fourth GREEN Armenia Platform Policy Dialogue Urges Action to Enhance the Country’s Water Sector

March 6, 2024

The Government of Armenia, jointly with the World Bank, the European Union, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), held the 4th policy dialogue of joint Growth and Recovery to Empower, Equip and Nurture (GREEN) Armenia Platform. Chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Khachatryan, the meeting identified innovative ideas and shared global knowledge on how sustainable water and wastewater management can contribute to the country's increased resilience to climate change. 

The goal of the GREEN Armenia platform is to combine and optimize policies and investment initiatives to support Armenia’s transition to a green economy. The event presented the government outlook for the water sector challenges and international partners' vision and commitments for addressing Armenia's water sector vulnerabilities, including potential partnerships to mobilize international expertise and prioritize investments in the sector. 

Armenia's water sector faces multifaceted challenges related to surface and groundwater management, water quality, irrigation, water supply and sanitation, as well as its management framework. Climate change is another crosscutting threat affecting the water sector and requiring better management of natural resources, including water. While in general Armenia's water resources are sufficient, their regional availability and seasonal fluctuation call for effective and sustainable water resources management. This includes improved water sector infrastructure, increased storage capacity, strengthened institutional capabilities, and relevant sector policies.

Addressing these challenges requires a comprehensive approach that integrates sustainable practices, technological innovations, and community engagement. Synergy among various stakeholders, including government agencies, non-governmental organizations, local communities, and international partners, is essential to leverage collective expertise and resources effectively. Additionally, accessing global knowledge networks and securing sufficient financing mechanisms can further bolster Armenia’s efforts to implement innovative solutions and build resilience against the impacts of climate change on water resources.

“Armenia has sufficient water resources availability, however this resource is fast declining because of climate change and too much water lost on its way from the source to its destination. A shift in the mindset is needed, recognizing that water requires better management. The World Bank is ready to help Armenia with investment in infrastructure, as well as improvements in its governing institutions and policies, in order to improve the management of one of Armenia’s most precious resources,” said Carolin Geginat, the World Bank Country Manager for Armenia.

In his speech, Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Khachatryan highlighted the key importance of sustainable management of water resources from the point of view of building a green and resilient future, especially emphasizing its importance in terms of climate change, and new vulnerabilities emerging as a result. At the same time, from the point of view of effective addressing of the existing problems, Deputy Prime Minister Khachatryan emphasized the need to review the framework of the current water resources management policy, including the adoption of new technologies and approaches.


“Increased irrigation needs, climate change, and an outdated water infrastructure pose risks to the available water resources in Armenia. In order to prevent further water losses, Armenia needs to develop better wastewater treatment, step up efforts to clean Lake Sevan and develop and implement a water management strategy, in line with the Art. 48 of CEPA. The EU stands ready to support the Government in all of these efforts, including in the context of the EU-Armenian Investment Coordination Platform that was established to accelerate investments of critical and strategic importance for Armenia,” said Vassilis Maragos, EU Ambassador, and the Head of EU Delegation to Armenia. 

“Climate change presents a significant threat to Armenia's water resources. To build forward better, ensuring sustainable water and wastewater management is crucial. The Water Sector Adaptation Plan represents critical steps in achieving this objective. It also places a much-needed spotlight on local-level, climate-smart water management solutions that UNDP has been successfully demonstrating over the past decades. This dialogue is a step forward in coordinating efforts and finding new collaborative solutions,” said Natia Natsvlishvili, UNDP Resident Representative in Armenia.

GREEN Armenia platform was initiated in June of 2022 with the aim of streamlining policy and investment initiatives for Armenia’s green transition and ensuring a more efficient coordination with the development partners. This was the fourth in the series of the high-level policy dialogues, which have been instrumental in elevating and streamlining policy and technical assistance on issues related to green economy transition, air pollution and water resource management. The counterparts remain committed to continuing these series, given their results driven and successful outcomes, with clear commitments both on the part of the government of Armenia and the development partners.