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Armenia: Government Approves 10th Activity to Support Micro-Businesses as Part of Ots Effort to Offset the Impact of COVID-19

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

The Government approved a 10th action as part of its effort to offset the impact of COVID-19, which provides for a one-time grant in support of those entities considered to be micro-businesses since January 1, 2010 under the Tax Code of the Republic of Armenia. The grant is available at the rate of 10 percent of beneficiaries’ posted turnover for the first quarter of 2020, but not more than the twofold of the minimum wage applicable in Armenia.

Prime Minister Pashinyan stated in this connection: “These anti-crisis measures are of operative nature, but there is a special feature in our decisions. We are doing our best to introduce a strategic component based on the ongoing economic policy and our political vision for the future.”

The meeting endorsed the Government’s motion to ratify the protocol signed on December 20, 2014 in St. Petersburg on amending the agreement of October 10, 2014 on Armenia’s accession to the May 29, 2014 Treaty on Eurasian Economic Union. Accordingly, the proposed increase in customs duties effective since January 1, 2020 shall be postponed for a period of one year, except for the ground means of conveyance specified in Product Group 87.

The Government passed a decision to ensure the reconstruction of state roads. In general, the length of the reconstructed highways envisaged by the decision is 33.7 km, of which interstate highways - 10.0 km, republican highways - 17.7 km և regional highways - 6 km. According to it, it is proposed to allocate 4.1 billion drams to the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure.

Nikol Pashinyan noted that the coronavirus-caused deviations shall not affect the rehabilitation of 500km-long road sections, which was announced last year. “We need to discuss what we will have to do in terms of capital expenditures which will help us safeguard the current stock of jobs and create new ones, if we are to counter the crisis. Capital expenditure represents such a key vector in which other branches should be weighed. The part of spending that we cannot afford this year is being redistributed in the budget, so that we can raise new funds and expand the scope of planned or potential capital expenditures. For a while now, we have been discussing this topic and will continue to do so until we are convinced that we have settled the matter in the best possible way,” the Premier said, hopeful that everything will go as planned.

The Government adopted another decision aimed at supporting those legal entities and individuals involved in the North-South Road Corridor Investment Program-2 that have filed financial claims against Corsan Corviam Construction JSC, mediating a budget loan based on the principle of repayment, maturity, valuation and solvency under the N T1-T2-CW-01 agreement signed between the Corsan Corviam Construction JSC and the RA Ministry of Transport and Communication.

The Prime Minister stated in this connection: “This is in fact an anti-crisis action, which came long before the coronavirus. I would like to remind you that a criminal case has been initiated and a probe is underway in this case. It is one of the highest-profile criminal cases ever launched in our country. We hope that the preliminary investigation will yield concrete results and that the damage caused to the state and the public will be restored in full.”

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