Pshav-Khevsureti Protected Areas, covering the area of 117 446 ha, was established in April 2014. Likewise Kazbegi National Park, it is located in the greater Caucasus, about 150 km NE of Tbilisi, representing high mountain ecosystems.
The Protected Areas are unique with their biodiversity value resulting from the sharp relief, soil and climate diversity. Such diversity of the landscape stipulated the existence of varied types of habitats and the significant number of flora and fauna species. Thus, Pshav-Khevsureti makes an important contribution to the conservation of leopard (Panthera pardus) in one of the four main distribution sites in the Caucasus, as well as other key species - Bezoar goat (Capra aegagrus aegagrus), endemic Eastern Caucasian Tur (Capra caucasica cylindricornis), and several species included in the National Red List.
By the start of the Programme the area was featured by an obvious lack of resources management and control: uncontrolled hunting, including hunting tourism; unsustainable tourism activities (quads) and illegal logging were reported in the region. It is expected that establishment of the Pshav-Khevsureti Protected Areas will support not only preservation of the originality and nature-ecological balance of the Eastern Caucasus landscapes, enhancing the ecological integrity of Greater Caucasus Corridor; but will also lead to the improvement of the social-economic conditions of the local population.
At present, the National Park is still at an early stage of development, with main Programme activities planned starting from 2016, when the appointment of the NP administration is envisaged.