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Incoming Tourists Spent USD 120 Million More in this Year’s First Six Months than Last Year

A regular Cabinet meeting was held on July 11, chaired by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.

Prior to discussing the agenda, the Prime Minister referred to the activities envisaged under the government’s mid-term expenditure program as approved at the emergency Cabinet meeting, as well as on issues related to road safety and the reasons behind yesterday’s power system failure in Armenia.

Proceeding to the agenda, the meeting approved the government’s legislative initiative on ratification of the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Armenia and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on mutual revocation of the visa requirement for persons holding regular passports, which was signed on May 26, 2019. The legislative initiative will be submitted to the National Assembly in accordance with the established procedure. The agreement is supposed to bolster trade, business and tourism exchanges between the two countries.

Republic of Armenia and PRC citizens holding valid domestic passports shall be free to enter or leave the territory of the other Contracting Party without a visa for up to 90 days within any 180- day period. Deputy Foreign Minister Artak Apitonyan noted that the People’s Republic of China has already launched the ratification process and will reportedly complete it within a month. The agreement shall come into force on the date of the last diplomatic note exchanged between the sides.

Highlighting the decision, Prime Minister Pashinyan pointed out: “Yesterday’s closed-door Cabinet sitting discussed this topic, not specifically about China, but in the sphere of tourism in general. The information we have and our analyses testify that we have a lot of positive changes in tourism.

I can cite a piece of statistics which says that within the first 6 months of this year tourists spent over USD 120 million more than they did last year. This is the Central Bank’s finding, based on the records of banking and credit card-mediated payments made in restaurants, hotels and various places. We must follow up our policy of developing this sector.

Mr. Osipyan and Mr. Vanetsyan, either the public order is as much important in terms of ensuring tourists’ comfortable stay in our country. Both Armenian citizens and visitors need to feel safe, and this is a crucial precondition for tourism development.”

The Government decided to amend the 2019 State Budget Law and allocate 448,000.0 thousand drams to the Science Committee of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport. Formed as a result of extra budget receipts, this amount will be spent as follows: 420000.0 thousand drams shall be used to fund 7 investment projects for the purchase of physics, molecular physics, chemistry, radio-electronics and Armenian studies-related modern equipment, while 28,000.0 thousand drams will be spent to set up an interdisciplinary data center.

By another decision, the Executive amended the 2019 State Budget Law and allocated AMD 690,688.3 thousand to the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport from the proceeds of the projected tax revenues in order to provide for the smooth functioning of 6 cultural facilities – museums and theaters, as well as the preservation, management and raising tourists’ awareness of Armenia’s cultural-historical monuments.

The Executive decided to streamline the import of long-grain rice originating from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The decision was drafted based on Article 2 of the Free Trade Agreement as signed on 29 May, 2015 between the Eurasian Economic Union and its Member States, on the one hand, and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, on the other hand, and the decision N155 of September 25, 2018, adopted by the Eurasian Economic Commission’s Board with a view to ensuring full consumption of Armenia’s quota of imported goods.


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