Mr Apolon Kakabadze, Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia, opened the Regional Environmental Center for the Caucasus (REC Caucasus) Founders meeting, held under the chairmanship of the European Union.
REC Caucasus has actively demonstrated its important function in the direction of solving environmental problems in the countries of the South Caucasus.
At the meeting, the parties approved the updated regional strategy of REC Caucasus and supported the strengthening of its role in achieving the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals at the regional and national levels. The countries also agreed that REC Caucasus has the greatest potential to act as a secretariat to work on the Mtkvari river basin issues and ensure the involvement of all three countries in solving the quantitative and qualitative transboundary problems of this unique river basin. It was also mentioned that REC Caucasus is actively working towards the implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive. The founders expressed their willingness to work closely with REC Caucasus to improve policy and legislation. They agreed that REC Caucasus has great potential to play the role of facilitator in regional and bilateral negotiations and prepare a concept to attract donor organizations to work on these issues.
In terms of regional cooperation, readiness for cooperation on climate change issues was also expressed, which covers both directions: climate change adaptation and mitigation.