ArmInfo.The Minister of Economy of Armenia Vahan Kerobyan received the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Canada to the RA Alison LeClaire, yesterday, the press service of the department reported today.
During the meeting, the sides discussed the Armenian-Canadian cooperation, outlined possible areas of partnership. The following areas of cooperation were identified: trade and investment, industry, high technology, education and tourism. The Minister expressed confidence that the Armenian-Canadian economic relations have great potential for revitalization and development.
Possibilities of exporting Armenian products to Canada, in particular solar panels and alcoholic beverages, were discussed. The Minister urged to use the opportunities to establish business relations with leading Canadian cannabis companies, stressing that Armenia has an attractive business environment, taking into account the country's climatic conditions, and a skilled workforce. In addition, Canadian investors can use the industrial zones under construction in Armenia to locate their branches here in order to freely enter the EAEU markets.
Vahan Kerobyan stressed the fundamental importance of education in the economic development of the country. Work is underway to achieve this goal. In this context, the parties discussed the possibility of implementing joint educational programs and professional development programs. The area of financial services was discussed. The Minister expressed readiness to support Canadian financial institutions, banks, in particular venture funds, stressing that Armenia has one of the most transparent and reliable financial systems in the region, thanks to which a number of leading international banks are successfully operating in the country.
During the meeting, issues of organizing business meetings with the participation of representatives of the private sector of the two countries were also discussed. In this regard, the minister proposed holding an Armenian-Canadian business forum in the second half of 2021.
It should be noted that according to the RA Statistical Committee, the foreign trade turnover between Armenia and Canada decreased significantly in 2020 - by 80.4% to $ 18.7 million. At the same time, export volumes amounted to only $ 3.5 million, demonstrating a decline of 94.4%, while imports decreased by 55.9% to $ 15.2 million. In the first 2 months of 2021 alone, the volume of the Armenian-Canadian trade decreased by 5%, amounting to $ 3.8 million, with a decline in exports by 60.6% to $ 380.1 thousand. At the same time, import demonstrated growth by 12.2% to $ 3.5 million