France Group meeting of Union of Communities of Armenia was held in Yerevan
On February 7, the meeting of the France Group of the Union of Communities of Armenia, which was organized within the framework of Armenian-French Decentralized Cooperation was held in Yerevan.
The meeting was attended by the representatives of communities, regional administrations, partner organizations, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure and the representatives of the French Embassy in the Republic of Armenia headed by Ambassador Jonathan Lacote.
Within the framework of the Union of Communities of Armenia, the France group has been functioning since 2010, which was formed on the recommendation of the 1st Armenian-French decentralized cooperation conference held in Yerevan in October 2010. Members of the group are communities and regions representing about 30 partnerships that have partnered with representatives of the French local authorities. The group coordinates the work of partners during the time between conferences.
On March 20, 2018, the mayor of Echmiadzin (currently Diana Gasparyan) was elected leader of the group.
She stated, that Armenian-French cooperation has historical basis and is very important for us.
The president of Union of Communities of Armenia Emin Yeritsyan informed that there are 30 cooperations between the local authorities and the regions.
Ambassador Jonathan Lacote stated that Armenian-French Decentralized cooperation was formed before diplomatic relations. 30 years long this cooperation continues to be a very important and a vector for activities.
The Armenian-French decentralized cooperation is part of a long history of friendship between the two countries.
Today there are about three dozen collaborations. Decentralized cooperation focuses on the development of local communities and contributes to the exchange of experience of Armenian and French local authorities and discuss issues of common importance.
The first Armenian-French Decentralized Conference was held in Yerevan in 2010, in October. It united 250 participants representing nearly thirty communities, focusing on four themes: Local government and staff training; Economic development, tourism and rural development; French teaching, Dual partnerships between communities. During the conference, the "Hayastan" group by the United Cities of France was set up to support the cooperation of Armenian and French local authorities. Within the framework of Union of Communities of Armenia the French Group was formed by the same purpose.
The Second Conference, held in Valance in October 2013, was finalized by the adoption of the Valance Declaration by members of the French and Armenian local communities, setting out sectoral goals and recommendations for cooperation, reaffirming the importance of further cooperation.
The Third Forum of French-Armenian Decentralized Cooperation was held in 2016. December 1 and 2 in Yerevan.This event, organized by the Union of Communities of Armenia and the Association of Unified Towns of France, brought together more than 200 participants. At the end of the conference, the Final Declaration of Yerevan, adopted on December 2, 2016, defines the next three years as the priority of economic development of the territories.
The Fourth Forum of French-Armenian Decentralized Cooperation, uniting about 250 participants, will be held in Lion, France at the end of 2020.
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