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Armenia

State Water Cadastre (AM0039)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Not Attached

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Water Resources Management Agency of the Staff of the Ministry of Nature Protection

Support Institution(s): Water Committee of the Ministry of Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources, State Committee of Real Estate Cadastre Non-governmental organisations

Policy Areas

E-Government, Public Service Delivery, Water and Sanitation

IRM Review

IRM Report: Armenia Design Report 2018-2020

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

5. State Water Cadastre: Creation and introduction of a unified information system for water resources
Commitment Start and End Date Commitment Start: November 2018
Commitment End: August 2020
Lead implementing agency Water Resources Management Agency of the Staff of the Ministry of Nature Protection
Person responsible from lead implementing agency Hrant Zakaryan
Title, Department Head of Water Resource Cadastre and Monitoring Division of the Water Resources Management Agency
E-mail hrant.zakaryan@mnp.am
Phone +37411 818 543
Other actors involved Other state actors involved Water Committee of the Ministry of Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources, State Committee of Real Estate Cadastre
Civil society, private sector Non-governmental organisations
Issues subject to regulation - Updating the State Water resources’ Cadastre program,
- establishing contacts between the available databases within interested organisations and the database of the Water Resources Management Agency of the Ministry of Nature Protection by providing complete water resources information.

Main objective - Raise the level of effectiveness of regulation of water resources management by ensuring sustainable use of water resources in terms of nature protection and economy,
- raise the level of public awareness and participation in the issuance of permits for water use.
Brief description of commitment The Water Resources Management Agency of the Staff of the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia manages the State Water Cadastre, which constitutes an information system. Currently, works are being carried out to update the State Water Cadastre, and after updating, the complete data, except for information containing official, commercial and other secret protected by law, will be posted on the relevant website all legal and natural persons may make use of. At the same time, in case of availability of appropriate software, it will also be possible to implement the function for granting permits electronically.
OGP challenge addressed by the commitment Improvement of public services, promotion of public integrity

Relevance to OGP values From the perspective of accessibility of information, the creation and introduction of a unified information system for water resources will serve as a major impetus in terms of transparency of the sector and improvement of the provision of public services.
Ambition  introducing more transparent and effective mechanisms for providing information about water resources
 managing risks and reducing administration
 ensuring public participation in the process of solving issues related to water resources management
Promotes efforts for implementation of SDG Goals or Targets 6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Verifiable and measurable criteria for performance of commitment Start Date: End Date:
Revising the terms of reference for updating the database of the State Water Cadastre November
2018 March
2019
Bringing the database of State Water Cadastre into compliance with the requirements set under Decision of the Government of the Republic of Armenia No 68-N of 2 February 2017 March
2019 June 2
019
Establishing a relationship between the tabular and spatial components of the State Water Cadastre June
2019 September
2019
Designing a unified database for water resources September
2019 December
2019
Launching a new database of the State Water Cadastre by providing a link between the state information database and inventory data submitted by the interested departments January
2020 August
2020

IRM Midterm Status Summary

5. State Water Cadastre

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan: [54]

Brief description: The Water Resources Management Agency of the Staff of the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia manages the State Water Cadastre, which constitutes an information system. Currently, works are being carried out to update the State Water Cadastre, and after updating, the complete data, except for information containing official, commercial and other secret protected by law, will be posted on the relevant website all legal and natural persons may make use of. At the same time, in case of availability of appropriate software, it will also be possible to implement the function for granting permits electronically.

Milestones

5.1 Revising the terms of reference for updating the database of the State Water Cadastre.

5.2 Bringing the database of State Water Cadastre into compliance with the requirements set under Decision of the Government of the Republic of Armenia No 68-N of 2 February 2017․

5.3 Establishing a relationship between the tabular and spatial components of the State Water Cadastre

5.4 Designing a unified database for water resources.

5.5 Launching a new database of the State Water Cadastre by providing a link between the state information database and inventory data submitted by the interested departments.

Start Date: November 2018

End Date: August 2020

Context and Objectives

Since the 1980s, Armenia has had no monitoring of underground water basins. Thus, the Water Resources Management Agency has difficulties assessing the available water for use and providing relevant usage permits. Also, according to the agency, there is a lack of accurate assessments of surface water balance. [55] Information on water use permits is published on the website of the Water Resources Management Agency. [56] However, due to the lack of accurate data, the information on available water resources is not accessible to the public.

This shortage of information hinders the ability to check the legitimacy of issuing water permits and contributes to a lack of transparency of water resource management. For example, according to various reports, groundwater outflow in the Ararat valley exceeds the inflow due to an over-issuance of water permits. Many local communities have limited access to drinking and irrigation water as a result. [57] Stakeholders mention other issues, such as inefficient water use, unjustified losses in the water system, illegal intake of groundwater, and overuse of river water by hydroelectric stations. [58]

This commitment aims to consolidate the information on all available water resources in the country into one database. The database would provide a map that visitors could use to check the use permits available for specific water resources and to see the permitted purpose of water use (e.g., drinking, economic, industry, irrigation). The database will be available online free of charge. It would exclude personal data and classified information, such as official and commercial information, or other secrets as defined by law. [59]

The government also plans for the platform to allow users to file their applications for water permits online by using the available map. [60] Apart from improving water resource management, the database will provide comprehensive and open information on available water resources. This will contribute to public oversight of water usage and verification of justification of relevant permits. As a result, it is expected that the effectiveness of water resource management will improve and that the ecological risks related to overuse, or unjustified use, of water will minimize. Thus, this commitment could significantly improve the accuracy and availability of water data as well as water resource management in Armenia. In the long term, this data could improve public oversight of water usage and facilitate greater accessibility to water for drinking and irrigation in communities where it has been scarce.

Next steps

For effective implementation of the commitment, it is critical that the government successfully completes inventory of water resources that could provide a basis for further collection of information on water use, quality, and monitoring data. Doing so would provide accurate information on the surface and groundwater resources in the country. This would serve for more effective water management and transparent distribution of water resources. Mechanisms should be established to ensure continuous updating of the database.

So that the information serves its purposes, public awareness campaigns should be carried out by the government and interested stakeholders. Experts also note the population’s low level of environmental awareness. In parallel to creating the database, it is necessary to initiate trainings on how to use the database with initiative groups and local civil society organizations. The government must also execute awareness-raising activities among communities, especially those vulnerable to violations of water resource use.

[54] Government of the Republic of Armenia, OGP Armenia Action Plan 2018-2020, https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Armenia_Action-Plan_2018-2020_EN.doc.
[55] Hrant Zakaryan (Water Resources Management Agency of the Ministry of Nature Protection), phone interview by IRM researcher, 21 February 2019.
[56] “Annual summary of water use permits,” Water Resources Management Agency of the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia, http://wrma.am/4_1.php.
[57] “Water Stewardship in Ararat Valley,” U.S. Embassy in Armenia, 20 July 2016, https://am.usembassy.gov/water-stewardship-ararat-valley/; and World Bank Group, Toward Integrated Water Resources Management in Armenia. Directions in Development; Countries and Regions, 2014, http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/433731468218409267/pdf/916410PUB0REPL0UBLIC009781464803352.pdf; and “For Sake of a People of Republic of Armenia: Verdict of Public Environmental Public Court on Disaster in Ararat Valley,” EcoLur, 05 February 2019, https://www.ecolur.org/en/news/sevan/--/10818/.
[58] Arman Vermishyan (environment expert), phone interview by IRM researcher, 21 February 2019; and Naira Arakelyan (Armavir Development Center), interview by IRM researcher, 24 January 2019.
[59] Government of the Republic of Armenia, Decision 68-N, 02 February 2017, https://www.arlis.am/DocumentView.aspx?DocID=111392.
[60] Hrant Zakaryan (Water Resources Management Agency of the Ministry of Nature Protection), phone interview by IRM researcher, 21 February 2019.

Commitments

  1. Open Data in Official Declarations

    AM0035, 2018, Asset Disclosure

  2. Government Grant Transparency

    AM0036, 2018, Fiscal Transparency

  3. Beneficial Ownership Register

    AM0037, 2018, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  4. Modernization of Community Website

    AM0038, 2018, E-Government

  5. State Water Cadastre

    AM0039, 2018, E-Government

  6. Land Cadastre

    AM0040, 2018, E-Government

  7. Integrated Social Services

    AM0041, 2018, E-Government

  8. Unified Information System for Management of Education

    AM0042, 2018, Capacity Building

  9. Exploring Medical Assistance Program

    AM0043, 2018, E-Government

  10. Platform for Submitting Petitions

    AM0044, 2018, E-Government

  11. Public Service Dashboard

    AM0045, 2018, E-Government

  12. State Travel Transparency

    AM0027, 2016, E-Government

  13. Accountability for Grants of the Government

    AM0028, 2016, E-Government

  14. Transparency of the State Budget

    AM0029, 2016, Fiscal Transparency

  15. "Open Data" in Official Declaration:

    AM0030, 2016, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  16. Portal for Community Decisions.

    AM0031, 2016, Capacity Building

  17. Accountability Licensing

    AM0032, 2016, Capacity Building

  18. Accessibility of Integrated Social Services

    AM0033, 2016, E-Government

  19. "One-Stop-Shop" Pilot Project Within Military Registration Offices

    AM0034, 2016, Capacity Building

  20. Digitization and publication of data in the “Republican Geological Fund” SNCO

    AM0016, 2014, Extractive Industries

  21. Ensuring Transparency in Mining

    AM0017, 2014, Extractive Industries

  22. Ensuring Public Awareness About Health Care Financing

    AM0018, 2014, E-Government

  23. Ensuring Transparency of Asset and Income Declarations of the RA High-Ranking Officials

    AM0019, 2014, Asset Disclosure

  24. Online Broadcasting of the State Procurement Appeals Board Sessions

    AM0020, 2014, E-Government

  25. Community Microsurvey Introduction in 10 Communities

    AM0021, 2014, E-Government

  26. Ensuring Open, Transparent, Participatory and Accountable Process of State Policies and Legislative Reforms

    AM0022, 2014, E-Government

  27. Public Awareness on the Lawmaking Activity of State Governance Bodies

    AM0023, 2014, E-Government

  28. Ensuring Transparency of the Election of Governing Boards of the RA General Secondary Education Institutions and of the Annual Budget Planning and Expenses of Ra General Secondary Education Institutions

    AM0024, 2014, Education

  29. Knowledge and Capacity Building of Public Servants in the Freedom of Information and Anticorruption Field

    AM0025, 2014, Capacity Building

  30. Ensuring Transparency of Local Self Government Bodies of Large Communities

    AM0026, 2014, E-Government

  31. Reviewing the Regulatory Normative Legal Acts (Regulatory Guillotine Project)

    AM0001, 2012, Legislation & Regulation

  32. Improving Internal Audit System for the Public Sector

    AM0002, 2012, Audits and Controls

  33. Improving Procurement Procedures

    AM0003, 2012, Capacity Building

  34. Improving Budget Planning and Reporting Systems Through Full Utilization of Program Budgeting

    AM0004, 2012, Audits and Controls

  35. Promoting Transparency and Objectiveness in Tax Administration

    AM0005, 2012, Conflicts of Interest

  36. Fight Against Corruption

    AM0006, 2012, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  37. Introduction of a Unified Payment System (Portal)

    AM0007, 2012, E-Government

  38. State Car Inspection Improvements

    AM0008, 2012, Infrastructure & Transport

  39. Implementation of an Electronic System for Consular Services

    AM0009, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration

  40. Implementation of Mail-Armenia System

    AM0010, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration

  41. Introduction of e-Statistics System

    AM0011, 2012, E-Government

  42. Introduction of e-Documentation Sharing System in Urban Communities

    AM0012, 2012, E-Government

  43. Ensuring Transparency of Asset Declarations

    AM0013, 2012, Asset Disclosure

  44. Standardization of Offical Websites Content

    AM0014, 2012, E-Government

  45. Improvement of Knowledge and Skills of Public Servants on Access to Information

    AM0015, 2012, Capacity Building