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Social Housing Energy Efficiency Programme in Armenia



Background

Since 2010 several sustainable energy finance initiatives have been operating in Armenia on-lending funds to energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Targeting mainly industrial companies and commercial enterprises, the USD denominated loans left a niche of underserved: the middle and low-income families in Armenia. The 16% currency depreciation between March 2014 and March 2015 eats up the cash saving benefits of energy efficient lending in USD and makes the lending market fairly challenging.

AFD recognized the need to offer an opportunity for Armenian households to lend in Armenian drams against the collateral of a salary earned e.g. by a teacher in Armenia. The loans bear an interest rate of max 14% per annum in Armenian drams and are being disbursed to local borrowers through local banks. AFD launched the programme under the auspices of the National Mortgage Company (NMC), a 100% subsidiary of the Central Bank of Armenia. Concordiste was part of the consortium implementing technical assistance. We developed the marketing strategy for the innovative product.


Purpose

  • Stimulate the uptake of loans within the credit line provided by L'Agence Française de Développement and the grant component provided by the EU-NIF

  • Inform households in Armenia of the benefits of an energy efficiency renovation and the opportunity to obtain loans through local partner banks

  • Demonstrate the ease and benefits of planning steps for house/apartment renovation (case studies, multimedia teaser)

  • Attract media and public attention to the subject of residential energy efficiency (launch event)

  • Promote application for loans as a three-step-process with transparent rules and requirements (e.g. low income collateral) which make the loans accessible.

Main Activities

  • Marketing strategy for residential lending in a low and middle income environment of Armenia

  • Launch event organized in Yerevan in February 2015, with 80 participants, representing the banking community, ministries, journalists, the IFIs active in Armenia, suppliers and industry experts

  • Branding of the facility as 'Jerm Ojakh'. The words 'Jerm Ojakh' have a sacred and personal meaning for Armenians. The dictionary meaning of the word is the 'roof of the house', but people perceive the word as all that is understood as house, in Armenia that is the family hearth, comfort, love, warmth and trust.

Achieved Impact

  • Facility launched with 12 press coverage articles and TV

  • As of March 2015 the impact is not yet measurable

Related News: 

EU Newsletter about the Programme launch

"Jerm Ojakh" the affordable loan for all

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