Monday, June 11 2018 18:47
Naira Badalian

Vardan Aramyan warned about possible risks of increasing pensions and  minimum wage

Vardan Aramyan warned about possible risks of increasing pensions and  minimum wage

ArmInfo.Ex-Minister of Finance of Armenia Vardan Aramyan believes that if the current trends are preserved, the budgeted GDP growth rate of 4.5% is reachable for the  country.  Nevertheless, as Vardan Aramyan told journalists, at this  stage it is premature to talk about raising pensions and salaries.  "If there is no certainty about the expected income, it is very risky  to raise pensions," he said.

According to Aramyan, it is not a secret for anyone that the minimum  wage and pensions in Armenia should be increased. But for today, as  before, Aramyan adheres to the following position: before taking on  new obligations on pensions and minimum wages, it is necessary to  clarify the expectations for internal revenues from own resources.  "If such incomes are not seen in the foreseeable future, in this case  it is extremely risky to incur premature and unreasonable expenses  for raising wages and pensions," he said.

At the same time, as Aramyan stressed, it is necessary to remember  that the increase cannot be temporary.  "The government can not raise  pensions and minimum wage for one year, in this context, if there is  no confidence in new, additional and long-term revenues of the state  budget, it is very risky to raise current expenses," Aramyan said.

To recall, the ex-government of Armenia has repeatedly stated that in  the present conditions, the increase of pensions and minimum wages  means a risk of increasing the country's debt burden. Meanwhile,  pensions and wages in Armenia have not increased since 2015. As  stated on February 12 this year. the former deputy finance minister,  and now the head of the Ministry of Finance Atom Janjugazyan, would  be adventurous to raise pensions without having a solid economic  basis and reliable sources of financing. He noted that "I would not  like to return to the experience of those years when on paper the  figures were raised, but the authorities did not have the resources  for appropriate payments." Already in the wake of a nationwide  protest, on April 20, former Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan informed  not only about the government's plans to reduce the income tax, but  also to raise pensions and a minimum wage. Nikol Pashinyan, the  incumbent head of the government, also spoke about the need to  increase pensions and minimum wage.

Meanwhile, the minimum wage in Armenia is 55,000 AMD, the average  pension is about 41,000 drams, with a minimum consumer basket of  61,300 drams.


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