The dismantling of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s led to the near collapse of the Armenian diamond cutting industry, which after a brief period of growth in the early 2000s has again declined. To rebuild the industry using global best practices and to increase access to raw diamonds, the Armenian government contacted the World Bank. Meanwhile, Lesotho had identified the diamond industry as a potential source for growth and had commissioned three diamond mines. The government also wanted to attract foreign direct investments and train high-skilled local labor to add value downstream.
Every year, approximately 10 million migrant workers from the lower-income Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) head to Russia and other middle-income CIS countries to seek employment and provide a livelihood for their families.1 Many migrant laborers remit funds to their home countries to support their extended families.
Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia are investing heavily in their transport sectors, which will help stimulate economic growth and reduce poverty. But the planning, construction, and management challenges are substantial---especially in the construction of high-grade expressways and tunnels, and in road maintenance---so countries in the South Caucasus region looked to the World Bank for assistance.
The Government of Armenia sought to develop a means of maintaining its roads system to assure sustained access of its rural communities to markets and services. In 2008, it launched the Lifeline Road Network Development Program to stimulate economic growth and contribute to poverty reduction by improving a selected network of lifeline roads. These lifeline roads were mainly rural roads that connected rural communities to a major interstate road.
The Governments of the Republic of Armenia and Tatarstan shared a similar aim: to improve the quality of their respective education system through the use of information and communications technology (ICT). Uruguay and Argentina were identified as the appropriate knowledge providers in helping Armenia and Tatarstan achieve better outcomes in education through ICT use by training teachers, designing e-contents and materials, and providing technical support to schools.