Armenian EITI delegation hosted by the UK Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Department (BEIS)

Armenian EITI delegation hosted by the UK Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Department (BEIS)

Within the framework of the study visit to the United Kingdom, on 16 September, the delegation of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative EITI Armenia (EITI) was hosted by the UK Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Department (BEIS). The main purpose of the study visit is to explore the UK's leading experience in establishing a public beneficial ownership register.

As a part of the Armenian delegation the workshop attended by Lilia Shushanyan, Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure, EITI MSG member, Lusine Tovmasyan, Head of the EITI Secretariat in Armenia under the Prime Minister’s Office, Sona Ayvazyan, Executive Director of Transparency International Anticorruption Center NGO, EITI MSG member, Pertsh Khachatryan, Head of Legal Department "Zangezour Copper-Molybdenum Combine" CJSC, EITI MSG member, Armen Stepanyan, Vice President Sustainability at "Lydian Armenia" CJSC, MSG member, Tatev Mkrtchyan, Deputy Head of the State Register Agency of Legal Entities of the Ministry of Justice of the RA, Ani Varderesyan, Adviser Coordinating Separate Functions within Structural Divisions, the Ministry of Justice of the RA and  Gor Khachatryan, National Coordinator, GIZ Office Yerevan.

During the workshop, the Armenian delegation learned from the UK BEIS Department and the Companies House about the establishment of the UK public register of persons with significant control (beneficial owners), legal regulations, and experience in operating the Register.

The workshop was held by Stephen Webster, Company Law Reform Assistant Director, BEIS, Olga Binions, Policy Adviser, Beneficial Ownership Transparency of BEIS, Lee Robins, Head of PSC Compliance, Protection Regime and Law Enforcement Support of the Companies House, Lynne Cross, Senior Policy Adviser and Chris Morgan, Technical Architect.

The participants of the workshop presented overview of the role of the Companies House, how the Companies House operates and maintains the Register of Persons with Significant Control, legal regulations, cooperation with other Government agencies and NGOs, as well as the scope of cooperation with other countries.

The Companies House representatives presented the procedures of collection of data, making it accessible to public, protection regimes, and enforcement of the PSC requirements. The members of the Armenian delegation studied the technical characteristics of the UK Registry, online and paper-based data submission processes, and the embedded data verification practice.

The representatives of the BEIS also presented the ongoing reforms and the expected international developments in the BO disclosure practices.

A meeting was also held with the UK EITI officials Mike Nash, Policy Advisor at the UK EITI, and Mike Earp, Senior Economist and Fiscal Analyst for the Oil and Gas Authority.

The members of the Armenian delegation and the EITI officials in the UK shared their experience of EITI implementation work undertaken so far by the countries, the EITI validation experience, as well as EITI's new requirements on project level reporting, systematic data disclosure and environmental reporting, and countries' steps to implement them.

Study visit to the United Kingdom was organized within the framework of the project “Support the implementation of the Global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in Armenia, Georgia and Ukraine” implemented by German Development Cooperation via Deutsche Gesellschaftfür Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).