Tuesday, January 21 2020 18:39
Alexandr Avanesov

ADB will continue to assist Armenia in developing infrastructures

ADB will continue to assist Armenia in developing infrastructures

ArmInfo. On January 21, RA Deputy Prime Minister Tigran Avinyan received the newly appointed director of the Representative Office of the Asian Development Bank  (ADB) in Armenia Paolo Spantigati.

According to the press service of the government, welcoming the  guest, Tigran Avinyan congratulated him on his appointment and  touched upon an effective partnership with ADB.

Expressing gratitude for the reception, Paolo Spantigati presented to  the Deputy Prime Minister the Partnership Strategy with Armenia for  2019-2023 and ADB Powers for 2020-2022 The strategy aims to support  the inclusive growth of Armenian infrastructures, the development of  human capital, as well as to strengthen regional cooperation through  the implementation of various programs, human capital development and  regional cooperation programs.  In this context, Tigran Avinyan noted  the importance of increasing ADB support to the private sector.  The  interlocutors also discussed the process of implementing the  North-South road corridor construction program and the existing  problems. The interlocutors also discussed the sustainable  development programs of the cities of Yerevan and the regions, the  improvement of the energy sector, the seismic safety of schools, as  well as the programs implemented and planned in the private sector.  The technical assistance provided by the ADB of Armenia in the  development of a transport strategy and the development of civil  aviation was also discussed.  To recall, in November 2019, ADB  endorsed a new 5-year country partnership strategy for Armenia  focused on increasing economic diversification and ensuring that  economic growth benefits all Armenians. According to the ADB Armenian  Office statement, under the new country partnership strategy for  Armenia, 2019-2023, ADB will focus on investments in priority  infrastructure, improving essential public services, and encouraging  greater regional cooperation and integration. ADB's strategy is fully  aligned with the Government of Armenia's long-term plan to develop an  inclusive, export-oriented economy and establish the country as a  leading hub for information technology and innovation. Under the new  strategy, ADB will ensure the sustainability of road network  investments and expedite the implementation of ongoing transport  projects, including the North-South Road Corridor Investment Program.  In the energy sector, ADB will support infrastructure upgrades and  encourage greater deployment of solar and wind power. This will help  diversify Armenia's energy mix and reduce its dependence on imported  gas.

To promote regional cooperation and integration, ADB will provide  finance and knowledge to support the development of economic  corridors and cross-border infrastructure improvements. A new Western  Caucasus economic corridor will be created to help Armenia capitalize  on its strategic position as the preferred link between the Eurasian  Economic Union, of which it is a member, and the European Union to  the west.

The plan places emphasis on integrating gender into ADB's operations  in Armenia, including specific education curricula and health  services designed to maximize access for women and girls.  This will  support the government's efforts to reverse the low female labor  force participation and improve school-to-work transition rates for  girls.

ADB's plan outlines strong support for the government's investments  in technology, including helping to introduce artificial intelligence  in the urban sector. It will also support the country's burgeoning  digital transformation and innovation ecosystem by nurturing  partnerships across government, academia, and industry. With an  estimated 8 million Armenians in the Diaspora, the government also  sees a thriving domestic technology industry as a means of connecting  with its citizens overseas and as an attractive industry in which to  return home and work.

ADB has been working with the Government of Armenia since 2005 and  has committed 31 loans totaling $1.46 billion, including 11 private  sector loans. ADB also committed technical assistance grants totaling  $14.9 million. As of 30 June 2019, ADB's active portfolio comprises  13 public and private loans totaling to $809.8 million. The Bank was  established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members-49 from the Asian  region.

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