The biodiversity-rich Caucasus region will be represented during the IUCN World Conservation Congress by a wide range of IUCN Member and partner organizations from Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. For the first time during an IUCN Congress, representatives from twelve Caucasus-based organizations will be present and showcase their work to such an international audience.
The Caucasus delegation will consist of seven IUCN Member organizations and representatives from non-Member State and regional organizations. The Environment Ministries of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia will be part of the delegation. Since 2008, the Georgian Ministry of Environment Protection has represented Georgia’s State Membership, and Armenia and Azerbaijan have expressed interest to become State Members.
The participation of government delegates is made possible through the collaboration between KfW’s Transboundary Joint Secretariat for the Southern Caucasus (TJS) and the IUCN Caucasus Cooperation Centre (IUCN CCC). The TJS is an initiative of the German Government to help implementing the BMZ/KfW Ecoregional Nature Protection Programme for the Southern Caucasus.
TJS and the IUCN CCC signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2011 and, among others, agreed to support the participation of the three Caucasus environment ministries in international events. Participating in the IUCN World Conservation Congress allows the three countries to present themselves, share experiences with other policy makers and be exposed to global nature conservation knowledge and efforts.
The entire Caucasus delegation is preparing to participate. During a briefing meeting on July 10, the IUCN Member organizations have shared expectations and experiences and informed each other about relevant Motions they wanted to help shaping. An active online discussion has started among the government delegates, TJS and the IUCN CCC staff to learn about ways of participating actively and ensure the best possible outcomes for relevant national processes. After the Congress, national follow-up meetings will be organized to guide the delegates in making use of their Congress experiences.
The Caucasus region will be brought to the attention of the Congress’ global audience during the event on 11 September: “Regional platforms for enhanced conservation – experiences from South-Eastern Europe and the South Caucasus” (#1215, Protected Planet Pavilion). The Caucasus session, between 12:00 and 13:00, will focus on the importance of diversely governed and effectively managed protected areas in the Caucasus region.