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"Disabled People Should Receive Full Social Assistance": PM Refers to the New Social Security System at Cabinet Meeting Session

A Cabinet meeting was held, chaired by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.

The Government amended one of its previous decisions to comply with the Law on State Benefits. The law provides that the funeral benefit is paid within 3 months after the disability has expired, at the time of re-examination, but before a medical-social examination conducted by the competent authority, in case the disabled person dies. It has also been stipulated that in the event of loss of entitlement to a payer education certificate after six months from the date of termination of entitlement to benefit, the entitlement to benefit shall be restored from the date of application in writing. Accordingly, there has been a need to review the relevant government decision and amend the provisions relating to new regulations.

With reference to social assistance programs, Nikol Pashinyan noted that a consultation had been held on the introduction of a new social security system. “The current system of social assistance does not encourage economic activity. Yesterday we had a discussion and we can state at least at a preliminary level that we have refined our conceptual approaches to this issue. We stated that those unable to work should get full social assistance in the Republic of Armenia since they are handicapped and cannot objectively provide for themselves. While able-bodied people should be encouraged to work,” the Premier emphasized, noting that this is a conceptual approach.

The Government approved the draft law of the Republic of Armenia “On Ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty,” which was adopted on June 27, 2013. The treaty refers to the basic principles of human rights designed to make accessible copies of works available to the blind, visually impaired or other people with reading disabilities.

The government’s reserve fund will allocate money to the Public Television and Radio Council of the Republic of Armenia in order to conduct an international audit with a view to assessing the methodology applied and the credibility of digital TV audience measuring surveys carried out by Admosphere Armenia. In this connection, Nikol Pashinyan noted that the government’s consistent policy is to give specific responses to monopolies in Armenia. “In general, we need to increase the transparency of not only the government but also that of key public institutions. I mean the television market. Today, we actually have some monopoly positions in Armenia. You may know that two entities have been established in our country. One of these two organizations distributes the money generated in the television advertising market, while the other company measures the ratings of TV companies and those advertising funds are distributed according to the ratings recorded. That is, in essence, it is an automated mechanism, and this system of advertising distribution in the TV market is monopolized, as a matter of fact. Assuming that there is an interconnection between TV companies, the ratings company, and the money-distributing company, we can state that there is a clear function of controlling information flows in the country. We should not conceal the fact that this function is supervised by individuals who have family ties with the former leadership of Armenia, and we should continue working in this direction,” the Prime Minister said.

Nikol Pashinyan noted that as assessed by many international organizations, the Government of the Republic of Armenia has made enormous steps in terms of transparency over the past 1.5 years. “The international community is very positive about it. So we need to take the next step: non-governmental organizations and the media should be transparent, too, including the transparency of their real owners,” the Head of Government said.

In this connection, Justice Minister Rustam Badasyan told the Prime Minister that they are going to develop and introduce mechanisms for exposing the real owners.

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