Thursday, May 25, 2017

The Kura II project team attended the National Conference on EaP GREEN Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production project in Azerbaijan

     At the invitation of the UNIDO Project Team, the UNDP – GEF Kura II project staff attended the National Conference on EaP GREEN Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production project in Azerbaijan in Baku, on 25-th May 2017. The National Conference was organized under the UNIDO-led Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP) Demonstration Component, as part of a regional project "Greening Economies in the European Union's Eastern Neighbourhood" (EaP GREEN) funded by the European Union (EU) with additional co-financing by the Government of Slovenia and the Development Bank of Austria. The project supports EaP countries, including Azerbaijan, in promoting RECP approach aimed at increasing efficiency of industrial production while reducing risks for environment and human health. 

    The results and experiences of the EaP GREEN RECP Demonstration Project in Azerbaijan were presented at the conference to raise awareness and understanding of the RECP among national stakeholders.  Key challenges and the ways forward to a green economy were discussed, as well as attraction of donor support for implementing RECP options. The Senior Capacity Building Expert of Kura II project Mr. Ahmed Abou Elseoud addressed the question to one of the speakers during the conference.
   The participation of the conference was very useful in terms of getting new contacts for further activities within the Kura II project related to Public Private Partnership for "Blue Business Awards", and potentially for project pollution abatement activities.
  The Project Managers agreed to continue discussions and to build on the successes of the UNIDO efforts where possible. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Inception Report is finalized

        The Kura II PCU has sent UNDP GEF Kura II final version of Inception Report to members of steering committee and Focal Points in beneficiary ministries in Azerbaijan and Georgia. 

        The draft Inception Report had been distributed to steering committee members and stakeholders for their review and feedback in early May, about three weeks after the Inception Workshop in Baku on April 6 - 7, 2017 conducted at the Minister's conference hall of Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of the Republic of Azerbaijan. 

        The project team is hard at work to accomplish the duties and tasks committed to in the Inception Report which are due to be implemented in line with the Project detailed Work Plan.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Kura II PCU team had fruitful meeting with EU Twinning Project experts

    On Friday, May 19, 2017 the Kura II PCU staff had received the experts of the EU Twinning Project “Upgrading the National Environmental Monitoring System (NEMS) of Azerbaijan on the base of EU practices”.
The Resident Twinning Advisor (RTA) Mrs. Katja Loven had visited PCU office and IWRM training center together with experts from Latvia experienced in water, air, soil quality monitoring who were in Baku last week with the aim to work with their counterparts in Azerbaijan sharing the knowledge about EU standards on quality monitoring.

     The RTA Mrs. Loven had informed that this Twinning project is going to be implemented by the January 2019 in cooperation with Austria, Finland, Latvia and Azerbaijan, the last being beneficiary of the project. She talked about the main aims and objective of the twinning project as well as current activities and achievements of the project so far.

    Chief Technical Advisor of the Kura II project Dr. Mary Matthews had informed on her turn about the UNDP GEF Kura II project, previous international donors funded in the region in the field of water resources, cooperation of this project with other related projects in the region.

     Project Senior Capacity Building Expert and other PCU staff members discussed water, air and soil quality related issues with Latvian experts during the meeting.

    It was agreed in conclusion to maintain collaboration and arrange meetings in upcoming future when the experts of the Twinning project representing other partner countries are going to visit Azerbaijan.  

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Kura II PCU stakeholder meeting at Azerbaijan Amelioration and Water Economy JSC

Kura II PCU had fruitful meeting with with one of the important stakeholders on May 16, 2017. The Azerbaijan Amelioration and Water Economy JSC staff consisted of heads of various departments and lead advisers received PCU staff of Kura II project. Project Chief Technical Adviser Dr. Mary Matthews expressed her gratitude to staff of Amelioration and Water Economy JSC for allocating their time to have meeting with PCU and their willingness to cooperate with Kura II project. She also introduced project team and gave brief information about the project.  

Dr. Mammad Asadov, head of department of science, design, construction and foreign relations also expressed his gratitude on behalf of JSC for the initiative to have meeting and stated their hope that Kura II is going to be international project in transboundary context which will benefit both of the countries e.g. Azerbaijan and Georgia. He confidently stated his intention on behalf of the JSC to work closely with the experts of Kura II project with the aim to contribute to outcomes of the project. 

The representatives of other departments of the company had also addressed their questions about the expected outcomes of the project and stated their willingness to cooperate with the project taking active part in capacity building and other activities. Dr. Asadov asked to provide general work plan on the project so that to review and define in which activities JSC can contribute and cooperate with Kura II. project.

In conclusion it was agreed to have follow up meetings during the implementation of the project with the aim to strengthen relations and expand cooperation in capacity building and other activities.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Kura II PCU team is having meetings with stakeholders in Tbilisi and Baku

       The UNDP GEF Kura II PCU had conducted fruitful meetings with the representatives of stakeholders from water sector in Azerbaijan and Georgia within the recent 2 weeks. Project Chief Technical Advisor Dr. Mary Matthews and Senior Capacity Building Expert Mr. Ahmed Abou Elseoud together with the staff of Tbilisi office of Kura II had series of meetings in Tbilisi during the dates of May 2 to May 5 meeting with wide range of experts, senior advisors and high level decision makers including deputy minister. The representatives of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure, Ministry of Energy, National Environment Agency, state companies on water supply, irrigation and energy, as well as staff of international organizations implementing water related projects in Georgia. 

     After fruitful week in Georgia the PCU continued series of meetings with stakeholders in Azerbaijan starting from May 8. The Senior Capacity Building Expert and project National Coordinator for Azerbaijan had meetings in leading departments of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Azerbaijan responsible for water resources. There had also been conducted useful meetings with the representatives of the World Bank, European Union country offices and State Water Resources Agency of the Ministry of Emergency Situations on May 10 discussing the completed and ongoing projects implemented in water sector by these institutions.  

       Representatives of stakeholders expressed that they are very glad to witness implementation of such an important project by UNDP – GEF which will benefit two countries and serve as a firm ground in strengthening water diplomacy between Georgia and Azerbaijan contributing to joint management of water resources of transboundary river Kura in line with the interests of both countries.    

Monday, May 8, 2017

Draft Inception Report on UNDP GEF Kura II has been submitted to the Steering Committee

On May 8, 2017 the Kura II PCU has submitted the Draft Inception Report to the Project Steering Committee members. The Draft Report was submitted in English and Russian. The report is consisted of information about the Inception Workshop conducted in Baku on April 6 and 7, 2017 at the Minister's Conference hall at the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Azerbaijan, as well as feedback stated during the workshop by the representatives of stakeholders from Azerbaijan and Georgia. Besides, information about project components with the detailed budget per each component had also been included to the report along with the copy of presentations presented during the Inception Workshop. It was requested from Steering Committee Members to provide their feedback in case if they have filling in the Response Matrix included to the Inception Report by May 22, 2017.  

The Stage 3 of Water Economics Training in Azerbaijan and Georgia is successfully conducted

        The third block of trainings on Water Economics had been completed in Azerbaijan and Georgia during the week of April 23 - 27.  ...