ArmInfo.The governments of Switzerland and Germany will provide additional assistance to the communities of Armenia in overcoming the economic development challenges caused by the COVID-19 epidemic.
As ArmInfo was told in the press service of the RA Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development, in the context of the Program for Improving the Local Self-Government System, the communities will be allocated an additional 460,000 francs, which will be directed to support the population in providing more efficient public services.
Deputy Regional Director at South Caucasus Development Program of Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation Werner Thut expressed his conviction that the right time has been chosen for the implementation of the Small Grants Program, which will allow the communities of Armenia to implement the processes of administrative-territorial reforms in the context of the COVID-19 epidemic. "We are very interested in investing and are very pleased to be able to play our part in this," said Werner Thut.
In turn, Vice Ambassador of Germany to Armenia Klaus Wendelberg stressed that given the difficult situation in Armenia, this initiative may be especially important. "The consequences of the war are added to the consequences of the epidemic. Thanks to the efforts of the governments of Switzerland and Germany, this new grant scheme allows communities to overcome the economic problems that have arisen," the diplomat said.
It is noted that Switzerland and Germany are allocating 230,000 francs each to address the urgent needs of the Armenian communities. To make better use of the existing potential for economic development, these additional funds will be directed towards the establishment of the Small Grants Program.
Grants will enable municipalities to improve social and economic infrastructure, as well as create jobs, stimulate self-employment, solve household income problems, etc. The program will stimulate small and medium-sized projects to be presented by municipalities in cooperation with local (non-governmental) economic organizations.
It is also reported that Municipalities and / or public-private consortia can submit project proposals to organizations implementing small grant programs. GIZ will coordinate the grant application process. The budgets of the project proposals can vary from 5,000 to 20,000 euros, funds will be provided through the GIZ. In exceptional cases, up to EUR 50,000 can be granted, especially for intercommunal projects. The Local Government Improvement Program is implemented by GIZ, the Council of Europe (CoE) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).