ArmInfo. The EU program, with a budget of 13 million euros aimed at the development of tourism in the three northern regions of the republic - Shirak, Lori and Tavush, was approved by the Armenian government and may be launched in October-November 2019. The head of the EU delegation in Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Switalski, stated this on June 16 in an interview with journalists in Ashotsk.
According to Switalski, the EU has already begun negotiations with the governor of Shirak regarding the efficient use of these funds. "Half a million euro is envisaged for the center of winter sports, and I hope that this center will be located in this region - in the north of Shirak, and will strengthen Ashotsk's role in the development of winter sports in Armenia," the diplomat said.
In addition, small businesses will also be given the opportunity to benefit from the program. They may apply for small grants to stimulate tourism. "Of course, it will take several years for the results to become obvious. But we have to be patient. We hope that we will soon sign an agreement with our partner organization, the German Development Agency. I really hope that the main work will begin in the autumn," Ambassador Switalski stressed .
The diplomat noted that at present the European Union is also discussing with the Armenian government a community support program called "Leader". Piotr Switalski did not reveal the details of this project, as it is at the stage of discussion with the Armenian government. However, he noted a desire to send funds directly to local communities, villages and cities. "From the first day of my stay in Armenia, this became a priority for me - to focus on the implementation of projects outside of Yerevan, in the provinces and local communities. I did everything in my power, and I hope that this program will be successfully implemented," the Ambassador assured .