ArmInfo. The problem of external debt should be viewed through the prism of the unprecedented crisis associated with the global coronavirus pandemic. Acting Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan stated this in the parliament, answering the questions of the MPs. Today, according to him, there is no country that would not have faced this most difficult phenomenon and would not have significantly increased its public debt.
According to Pashinyan, there is no need to fear an increase in the public debt. Moreover, if there is a need to develop infrastructure, build schools and kindergartens, then the debt can and should be increased. Today there are countries whose public debt exceeds GDP by 2 or more times.
As an example of development programs, Pashinyan noted the pace of construction of the North-South corridor, asking to assess how low and ineffective they were before the revolution and what is their current situation today.
In Armenia, the specific debt burden per capita by April 1, 2021 had already reached $ 2.9 thousand from $ 2.5 thousand a year earlier. Moreover, the per capita debt burden from external debt increased from $ 1.9 thousand to $ 2.3 thousand. According to the preliminary data of the RA Ministry of Finance, published by the Statistical Committee, the state debt of Armenia by April 1, 2021 amounted to $ 8.652 billion (4.592 trillion drams), accelerating the y-o-y growth to 19.2% from 5 .1% a year earlier. This is due to the accelerating growth of both external and internal debt. In particular, external debt accelerated y-o-y growth from 4.5% to 17.1%, amounting to $ 6.715 billion (3.564 trillion drams), while the growth of domestic debt accelerated from 7.5% to 24.6% - to $ 1.937 billion (1.028 trillion drams).
In the first quarter of 2021 alone, the national debt grew by 8.6%, as a result of an increase in external debt by 10.9%, with a modest increase in domestic debt by 1.1%, while a year earlier the quarterly dynamics was negative in the public debt (0.5 %) and on external debt (0.9%) with a similar current growth in domestic (1.1%).
Within the external debt in the first quarter of 2021, the share of the Government increased to 92.6% from 91.3% a year earlier, while the share of the Central Bank fell to 7.4% from last year's 8.7%, amounting in absolute terms to $ 6.221 billion and $ 494.5 mln, respectively. Moreover, the multidirectional y-o-y dynamics of the external debt of the Government and the Central Bank have been maintained. In particular, the government's external debt accelerated its growth from 5.9% to 18.8%, and the Central Bank's - slowed down the decline from 8.3% to 1%.