Improvement of the local self-governance system Armenia
Switzerland continues to support the national reform on territorial consolidation and decentralization which has been strongly confirmed by the new Government. On one hand, necessary framework conditions will be developed to finalize the amalgamation process. On the other hand, the municipalities will be capacitated to provide efficient and quality administrative services to their citizens and to incentivize local development. Citizen participation will be emphasized to render local authorities more accountable and local development more inclusive.
Democratic participation and civil society
Women’s equality organisations and institutions
- Council of Europe
- Foreign private sector North
- Foreign private sector South/East
- United Nations Development Programme
|Background||Back in 2015, the territory of the Republic of Armenia was highly fragmented, with most of its 915 communities incapable of raising sufficient revenues, maintaining public infrastructure, providing basic public services to the population, or of sustainable social and economic development. The Armenian Government therefore launched a large-scale Territorial and Administrative Reform. By 2017, 324 out of the 915 communities were consolidated in 34 municipalities, reducing the total number of communities from 915 to 502. However, the reform process is incomplete in territorial terms, and the decentralization of competencies and financial resources is still quite limited. Capacities of local authorities to efficiently deliver public services and development-oriented incentives remain insufficient. Moreover, there is a lack of civic participation, women’s political representation as well as accountability mechanisms. - While the “Velvet Revolution” of April/May 2018 and Parliamentary Elections of December 2018 fundamentally altered the conditions for the country’s development, the new Government and Parliament in February 2019 confirmed, further strengthened and concretized the commitment to territorial reform and decentralization of the previous, pre-revolutionary Government.|
Strengthening the accountability, effectiveness, efficiency and inclusiveness of local self-government in Armenia in a regionally and socially balanced manner.
The underlying assumption is that the combination of civic participation-driven bottom-up and government-led top-down processes renders public policies more accountable and cost-effective to the benefit of all Armenian citizens.
|Target groups||In Phase 2, the program will continue to support the consolidated 52 municipalities (as per Outcomes 2 and 3) benefitting 650.000 Armenian citizens, hence 21.7% of the overall population and 32.5% of the population residing outside Yerevan. Furthermore, the program will support yet-to-be-consolidated municipalities in the framework of further roll-out of TARA. Outcome 1 will be beneficial to all municipalities of Armenia, except Yerevan. As such, around 2 Mio Armenian citizens (out of 3.04 Mio/2017) will benefit by the Program’s activities. Women and young generations are particularly addressed to enhance their participation in local governance and politics (Outcome 3). Further, MTAD will benefit from this program in terms of capacity-development, the elaboration of a National Training system and a sound legal framework for decentralization.|
Outcome 1 – The Government has created favorable framework conditions for decentralization
Outcome 2 – Municipalities have delivered relevant services and incentives for citizens, the business environment and local economic actors
Outcome 3 – Citizen participation of all relevant groups at local level has increased
Outcome 4 –The Community Association of Armenia (CAA) has delivered the required services to the municipalities and has lobbied for the interests of their constituency
1. The Government is supported in the further definition of the Territorial and Administrative Reform as well as decentralisation reform
2. The Government is supported in the design and implementation of a National training system
3. Capacities for municipal administrative service delivery are modernized in technical and organizational terms
4. Processes and procedures for the delivery of key municipal sectoral service areas are improved
5. Key management and steering functions of target municipalities are strengthened
6. Environmentally sustainable Local Economic Development plans are established
7. Accountability instruments and participatory processes at the local level are established and applied 8. Citizens, including women, youth, vulnerable and marginalized groups, Civil Society Organizations and Civil Business Organization are enabled to participate in decision-making
9. CAA is strengthened to perform as a formal, credible and sustainable body
Results from previous phases:
The project achieved following results:
• The policy framework for decentralization as well as for local and regional development has been significantly improved through adoption of the new Law on Local Self Governance.
• 52 amalgamated municipalities strengthened their governance and management capacities, among others through the introduction of an e-governance system, one-stop shops, development plans, and trainings provided to the municipal staff.
• Capacities of the Communities’ Association of Armenia (CAA) have been improved by development of the new charter, creation of the thematic standing committees and operational coaching.
• Different infrastructure projects with models to manage capital investments have been tested in 5 selected municipalities. Results have been handed over to World Bank for further implementation.
|Directorate/federal office responsible||
Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe
Foreign state institution
United Nations Organization (UNO)
|Coordination with other projects and actors||The program strengthens links with other SDC programs in the South Caucasus, related to Climate Change Adaptation, Women Economic Empowerment, Livestock- based Value Chain Development, and Regional & Local Development. Furthermore, it creates synergies & complementarities with projects of EU, USAID, UK, WB.|
|Budget||Current phase Swiss budget CHF 8’657’675 Swiss disbursement to date CHF 7’968’404 Total project since first phase Budget inclusive project partner CHF 15’630’152|
|Project phases||Phase 2 01.07.2019 - 30.09.2024 (Current phase) Phase 1 19.05.2014 - 30.06.2019 (Completed)|