A conference on the current developments in Armenian notary services was organised by the IRZ in Yerevan on 11 July 2016. This conference was held in partnership with the Armenian Chamber of Notaries, which was represented by its President, Vanine Hovsepyan, and some of its board members. From the German side, the Vice-President of the German Federal Chamber of Notaries, Richard Bock, himself a notary and also Chairman of the Koblenz Chamber of Notaries, took part in the one-day conference. Over 30 Armenian notaries from Yerevan and many other regions as well as representatives of the Ministry of Justice also took part in the event. This was the first event organised by the IRZ with the Armenian Chamber of Notaries.

One of the objectives of the conference was to discuss digitalisation and people-friendly processes, which are currently part of the reform of notary processes in both Germany and Armenia. It was also the occasion to talk about some of the new developments in notarial matters in Armenia, the subject of reforms to Armenian notarial law, which has existed for several years already and is now undergoing revision by the Ministry of Justice.

With regards to digitalisation, Richard Bock gave an outline of the electronic systems already used in German notary processes in the field of the land and commercial registers, as well as the upcoming digital archiving of notarial documents across Germany, which was initiated by the German Federal Chamber of Notaries. Vardan Hovhannisyan, an IT expert at the Armenian Chamber of Notaries explained the “One Window” system, an electronic system simplifying notaries’ applications with various authorities, which has recently been introduced in Armenia. Other lectures covered subjects including the enforcement of notarial deeds, notarial liability and the responsibilities of notaries in certification processes. The short lectures by German speakers and their Armenian colleagues were followed by lively and often very controversial discussions. This showed how interested the participants were in the subjects that were discussed and enabled an intense exchange of opinion between the experienced practitioners and the Ministry of Justice.