YEREVAN, January 31, / ARKA /. Armenia’s nature protection ministry has launched a three-year program to create a biosphere protected zone in Armenia’s southern region of Syunik, worth $8.25 million as part of a financial cooperation agreement between the governments of Armenia and Germany , minister Aram Harutyunyan announced today.
He described the program as ‘very important’ saying its first stage was already accomplished. In the next stage the ministry will choose a program manager.
According to the minister, an important component of f this program is the study and assessment of the socio -economic situation in cities and rural communities within the protected area in order to promote a kind of activity typical of protected zones.
The program is sponsored by the German Development Bank. The territory of the future biosphere protected area embraces state reserve Shikahogh, Arevik national park and several other smaller protected areas and about 20 natural monuments, as well as 19 rural communities and 4 cities with a population of 68,800. -0-