The end of the month marked an important meeting for the members of the Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP) Stakeholders Group in Azerbaijan. Concretely, on 28 July 2022, between 10:00-16:00 (AZT), the RECP Group gathered in Baku to discuss the progress and ways forward to advance green growth in the country. The event was hosted under the Result 2 Component on “Circular Economy and Growth Opportunities” of the European Union-funded “EU4Environment” Action. The activities outlined under this component included UNIDO’s efforts to upscale and institutionalize Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP) amongst Small and Medium-sized manufacturing Enterprises (SMEs), and to identify opportunities that can support the creation of circular value chains through industrial waste maps (IWMs). These, in turn, raised awareness about the benefits of a Circular Economy among enterprises, the government, and civil society.
For the implementation of the 1st phase of the RECP activities in Azerbaijan, in May 2021, UNIDO contracted a National Implementing Partner comprised of a consortium of companies led by ACE Group Consultants LLC. Since then, some achievements have been reported in the implementation of RECP and Circular Economy activities in Azerbaijan. However, there were also some challenges faced within the programme that need to be addressed. The RECP Stakeholders Group meeting served as a platform to discuss and overcome these challenges and discover new opportunities to further institutionalize RECP in the country.
The meeting gathered members of the RECP Stakeholders Group, comprised of representatives from the Governmental institutions (including the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, as National Focal Points of the “EU4Environment” Action), the Small and Medium Business Development Agency, representatives from companies, relevant institutions, associations, NGOs, and academia. Representatives from the Delegation of the European Union to Azerbaijan and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) were also invited.