Monday, April 6 2020 14:08
Karine Melikyan

In Armenia, economic activity in January-February 2020 increased by  8.7% per annum

In Armenia, economic activity in January-February 2020 increased by  8.7% per annum

ArmInfo. In Armenia, economic activity in January-February 2020 increased by 8.7% compared to the same period in 2019, compared to last year's 6.5% growth. According  to the final data of the RA Statcommittee, the annual growth was  provoked to a greater extent by the industrial sector and the energy  complex.

Only in February 2020, economic activity increased by 9.2%,  and compared with February 2019 - by 8.7%, compared to last year's  upward 9.3% in February and 7.6% compared to February 2018. Since  2019, data on the agricultural sector are published only quarterly,  and therefore are not available in the February statistical report.

According to statistics, in January-February 2020, annual growth was  recorded in electricity generation - by 23.1%, industrial production  - by 15.3%, in the services sector - by 11.2%, in the trade sector -  by 6.3%, sphere construction - by 5.8%. A year earlier, in  January-February 2019, the energy complex was in decline by 21%, and  the remaining sectors showed growth: construction sector - 21.6%,  services sector - 17.5%, retail sector - 13.1%, industrial sector -  1, 9%.

In annual terms (February 2020 to February 2019), the energy complex  and the industrial sector also showed the highest growth - 27.9% and  16.5%, respectively, while a year earlier the energy complex was in  decline by 14.5%, while the industrial sector showed modest growth by  4.7%. After them, the services sector, the construction sector and  the trading sector remained in the upward trend - 10.4%, 4.3% and  2.8% respectively, compared to last year's positive 19.3%, 21.3% and  8.3%.

The industrial production price index rose in January-February 2020  by 0.7% per annum, with a decline of 0.9% in February and an annual  decline of 0.5% (February 2020 to February 2019), while a year  earlier in January - February 2019 recorded a decline of 1% per  annum, with an increase in February of 1.6% and an annual increase of  0.6%.

In January-February 2020, the trading sector with the volume of 435.6  billion drams ($ 909.4 million) holds the leadership in absolute  terms. The second place in terms of services was 305.3 billion drams  ($ 635.9 million), and the third place was taken by the industrial  sector - 299.6 billion drams ($ 625.4 million). The construction  sector follows - 26.97 billion drams ($ 56.3 million). Data from the  agricultural sector, traditionally in fourth place, are not  available. The volume of electricity generation in January-February  2020 amounted to 1461.3 million kWh, of which 735 million kWh. came  in February.  At the same time, the foreign trade turnover of Armenia  in January-February 2020 amounted to 496.4 billion drams ($ 1036.4  million) with an annual growth of 2.4%. In its structure, the volume  of exports underwent annual growth of 8.8% to 175.3 billion drams ($  366 million), while imports - an annual decline of 0.8% to

321.1 billion drams ($ 670.4 million). In February 2020 alone,  foreign trade turnover increased by 15.4% due to an increase in  imports by 19.9% and exports by 7.6%, and compared with February  2019, the decline in imports by 3.2% and exports by 1.3% provoked a  decrease in foreign trade by 2.5%. A year earlier, in  January-February 2019, foreign trade turnover experienced an annual  decline of 7.7% due to a decline in exports by 11.6% and imports by  5.6%, and only in February 2019 increased export and import by 32.6%  and 25.8%, respectively, led to an increase in foreign trade by 28%.

The average calculated rate of the dram in January-February 2020 was  478.98 dr / $ 1, and in February 2020 - 478.74 dr / $ 1, against  487.10 dr / $ 1 - in January-February 2019 and 488.41 dr / $ 1 - in  February 2019.

Recall that according to the forecast of the Central Bank of Armenia,  the impact of coronavirus on the economy will slow down the growth of  Armenia's GDP in 2020 to a stagnant 0.7% (from the actual 7.6% growth  in 2019). The Central Bank of Armenia's foreign trade expectations  for 2020 are also pessimistic, in particular, imports are expected to  fall by 9-11% (versus actual growth of 9.1% in 2019) and exports by  5- 7% (versus actual growth in 2019 by 10.3%). According to the  forecasts of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), in Armenia, reflecting  the impact of COVID-19 on the economy, GDP growth will slow down to  2.2% in 2020 with a less rapid growth in consumption, and then in  2021 Armenia's GDP growth will accelerate to 4, 5%. According to the  forecast of ADB in Armenia, in 2020 export growth will slow down to  2.5%, and import growth to 7.5%.

It should be noted that from March 16 to April 14 a state of  emergency was introduced in Armenia in order to prevent the spread of  coronavirus infection. In this regard, a temporary ban has been  established for certain types of activities, including restaurants,  cafes, bars, casinos, hotels, canteens, retail facilities and  industries not related to food and medical products. 

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