ArmInfo.Economy Minister Vahan Kerobyan expects per capita GDP to increase to $8,200 by the end of this year. Speaking on the CIVILNET channel in English, the head of the department noted that despite expectations of the poverty level to reach 39.6%, this figure was reduced to 24.8%.
As the minister noted, in the future the government intends to achieve at least 7% growth in 2024, despite the forecasts of Western partners of 5%. He emphasized that although the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the subsequent influx of immigrants played an important role in economic growth of Armenia, the main driving force for attracting these people was political and economic reforms in Armenia. Improving the business environment, reducing corruption and various reforms implemented since 2018 have allowed citizens of other countries to choose Armenia as their new home.
Regarding the economic plans of the Armenian government, Vahan Kerobyan notes that work to improve relations with neighboring countries and open communications is underway at the macro level. At the micro level, connectivity with various countries has already improved with an increase in the number of flights and plans to increase direct flights to destinations including China next year. According to him, it is planned to connect Yerevan with such technological centers as Berlin, Amsterdam, London, as well as with the western cities of China. It is also planned to increase investments in road infrastructure, in particular through the Gyumri dry port project in the Shirak region.
Speaking about infrastructure expansion projects with Iran, Kerobyan noted that one of the projects envisages the creation of a trade route connecting India, Iran, Armenia, Georgia and Europe. The minister emphasizes that Armenia is now actively diversifying its partnerships, and in this context, the country has achieved significant improvements in trade with the United Arab Emirates, the forecast figure for trade turnover with which will be about $2 billion by the end of the year. Kerobyan in this context emphasized that the UAE has become the leading investor in Armenia, replacing the Russian Federation. There are ongoing projects and strong business ties between the two countries. Armenia is striving to diversify its markets and make business more flexible.
Regarding the influx of foreigners and Armenia's desire to become a technological center in the region, the minister noted that It is also important to make English the official language (official, but not state language), which will significantly contribute to improving the business environment. The goal is for Yerevan to become a prominent regional and eventually global technology hub. Kerobyan noted that compared to other countries in the region, English is very popular in Armenia.
The Minister also emphasized the need to improve the infrastructure and quality standards of Armenian exports to Europe, detailing the alignment of product requirements with European and international standards, which is an important step to optimize exports to the EU.
The minister also noted that over 10 months of this year, more than 2 million tourists visited Armenia, which is a record figure, exceeding the pre-pandemic figure by 25%.
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