“Digitizing sectors for competitiveness”

“Strategic Development Agency” NGO during the period of 2023-2026 in cooperation with its partners representing ICT industry, Tourism, Agriculture, and Manufacturing (light industry) sectors in Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries will act as an implementing partner for the RECONOMY’s newly launched “Digitizing sectors for competitiveness” project under the support of HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation — the cooperating partner to Sweden’s government agency for development cooperation (SIDA).

Under the focus of the project will be enhancing digital transformation of Tourism, Agriculture and Manufacturing sectors in EaP countries to enable sectors’ growth and generation of better income and decent/green jobs for women and young individuals, including disadvantaged and excluded groups.

Within the project the strong, target market-oriented ICT companies should develop innovative and sustainable digital technologies, services and solutions adapted for small and medium enterprises in Tourism, Agriculture and Manufacturing sectors in the target EaP countries to help companies in these employment-intensive industries increase the competitiveness in local and international markets, grow and generate more decent/green jobs for women and young individuals, including disadvantaged and excluded groups.

“Resilience and Economic Recovery of Border Communities in Armenia”

“Strategic Development Agency” NGO during the period of January-November, 2023 will implement “Resilience and Economic Recovery of Border Communities in Armenia” (REBCA) project.

The project is funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and implemented by the UN World Food Programme (UN WFP) in partnership with the World Vision Armenia (WVA), Child Development Foundation (CDF) and Strategic Development Agency (SDA).

Due to the military escalations in September 2022, 6 Armenian communities in the areas bordering Azerbaijan in Gegharkunik, Syunik and Vayots Dzor regions (totaling 133 settlements and 133,165 people) are directly affected, including in terms of economic livelihood and food security.

“Resilience and Economic Recovery of Border Communities in Armenia” Project aims to improve crisis resilience in the border settlements of Vardenis (Gegharkunik), Sisian (Syunik), and Jermuk (Vayots Dzor) communities by providing humanitarian and economic support.

The project has two main components. The first component envisages the provision of social assistance to the conflict-affected families, and the second component covers the implementation of rehabilitation activities.


The Program Coordination Platform for Sustainable Management of RA’s Natural Fodder Areas: Pastures and Grasslands

The Program Coordination Platform for Sustainable Management of RA’s Natural Fodder Areas: Pastures and Grasslands was established in 2018 as a result of collaboration of Strategic Development Agency NGO, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Community Agricultural Resource Management and Competitiveness II Project, implemented by the RA Ministry of Economy.

The rationale for creation of the Platform was the need to promote effective cooperation, exchange of information, as well as coordination of activities among the projects implemented in Armenia, focusing on sustainable management of natural fodder areas.

Since 2018 the Platform has evolved and now more than 10 organizations, institutions, projects and public administration bodies involved in the Platform’s activities, aiming to ensure viability of programs and investments in the area of animal farming, increase economic opportunities of communities and support income growth of rural residents in Armenia.

The key objectives of Program Coordination Platform for Sustainable Management of RA’s Natural Fodder Areas: Pastures and Grasslands” are:

  • Coordination of program activities, including exchange of information and experience, work planning
  • Identification of potential cooperation areas
  • Implementation of joint projects, activities
  • Advocating and supporting development of relevant state policy and legislation promoting sustainable use and management of natural fodder areas

Sheep Shearing Festival

The traditional Sheep Shearing Festival in Armenia has been held since 2014 by the Strategic Development Agency (SDA) NGO. Sheep Shearing Festival was first held in 2014 and “Strategic Development Agency” (SDA) NGO has been involved in its organization and execution over the years. In 2017, SDA headed the organization works and held the festival in Syunik Animal Market. The main purpose of the event is to promote local products, traditions and culture of  Vayots Dzor and Syunik regions, as well as to develop rural tourism, which will contribute to the economic development of both regions.

In 2019, the Festival expanded its geography and involved participants from Tavush, Shirak, Lori and Gegharkunik regions.

Each year the Sheep Shearing Festival includes a sheep shearing competition, games, live music, dances, and a fair, where local producers from Vayots Dzor, Syunik, Tavush, Shirak, Lori, Gegharkunik regions present their products: homemade food, drinks, and handmade souvenirs.

According to the established tradition, best sheep shearers participate in the competition. The festival also includes a cultural and experience exchange component, for which a master class is conducted by a professional sheep shearer from abroad. During the master class, local farmers have the opportunity to get acquainted with the traditions of other sheep-hunting regions, to exchange experiences.

The Syunik Animal Market /The Ranch

The Syunik Animal Market was established in 2015 by Strategic Development Agency (SDA) NGO within the framework of the “Livestock Development in Syunik Marz” Project financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). In 2021 The Syunik Animal Market was transformed into a social enterprise “The Ranch” LLC.

Following its social mission, “The Ranch” LLC ensures knowledge and experience exchange, provides cattle slaughtering and high-quality veterinary services, supports in animal trade and replacement, delivers trainings and extension services on good animal husbandry practices.

Apart from its main purpose of stimulating cattle trade by creating an effective dialog between the buyers and sellers, it also serves as a great location for local and foreign visitors, contributing to the tourism development in the region. Since 2017, “The Ranch” has been hosting the Sheep Shearing Festival, which is a unique attraction for tourists and a great opportunity for farmers from the nearby villages to sell their products.

Since 2018, “The Ranch” has welcomed students majoring in agricultural professions at Goris State Agricultural College and Sisian branch of ANAU to undertake internships at its premises, thus giving them a unique opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge into practice with a guidance of professional veterinarian. Furthermore, frequent professional trainings and workshops makes “The Ranch” a learning hub for farmers and veterinarians from all the regions of Armenia to enrich their expertise in fodder production, breed improvement, animal health and biosecurity practices, poultry and cattle farm management etc.

The website www.animalmarket.am serves as a source of information for farmers, where they can find all the necessary materials on advanced methods and practices used in animal husbandry.

Catering Facility offers national food sourced from local farms and orchards to promote small-scale regional producers and cooked in accordance with local traditions.