Second National Initiative Group Meeting in Azerbaijan

On August 21, 2020, the second meeting of the National Initiative Group of Azerbaijan (NIG Azerbaijan) on development and planning of regional dialogue and cooperation took place online, bringing together the scientists and practitioners. The meeting was held in three sessions.

At the first session, moderator Fuad Bagirov and co-chairs of the NIG Azerbaijan Ramiz Mammadov, Director of Geography Institute of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Science (ANAS), acting member of ASAR, and Shamil Huseynov, Environmental Law Expert presented the main work and activities carried out in terms of advocacy and cooperation since the establishment of the National Initiative Group of Azerbaijan.

The second session was devoted to the discussion of the policy paper one: “Assessment of natural risks for the calculation of insurance tariffs in the Caucasus mountain region” and presentation was made by Ulkar Ahmad Zada, Responsible Actuary, “Qala Insurance” Inc. on “Natural Hazards and Risks”.

It was mentioned that there is no system of pooling natural risks in Azerbaijan. The government reacts just to natural disasters after it happens. Therefore it was recommended to ensure government support in developing such a system involving insurance companies of the country.

The third session focused on discussions of policy paper two “Danger of loss of chestnut tree in Caucasus mountains”. Maharram Hasanov Ph.D, Agro-climate specialist, the Institute of Geography, ANAS made the presentation “Chestnut trees in the Caucasus mountains”. 

The chestnut tree issue caused great interest of participants as in one hand, it carries symbolic meaning in ethnic identity. From the ancient ages, the local population used chestnuts in dishes, timbers for furniture. On the other hand, chestnut is very vulnerable to changing environment so that it could be considered as an indicator of adverse climate change. It was recommended to consider chesĐľnut diseases at the regional level.

At the final session, National Initiative Group members made their suggestions for enhancing the cooperation and dialogue between academia and practitioners as well as between academia and decision-makers. 

The meeting was held in the framework of the project Strengthening the Climate Adaptation Capacities in the South Caucasus” (SCAC) funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).