Macroeconomy

 

Armenian President attends opening of World Investment Forum 2018 in Geneva
/Oct 23/A1+/

President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian, who is in Switzerland on a working visit, attended the opening ceremony of the 10th World Investment Forum 2018 in the UN headquarters in Geneva. The Forum is organized by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). This year it is held under the Investments for Sustainable Development slogan, the Presidential Office reports.

Before the launch of the Forum, the Armenian President had a brief talk with President of Switzerland Alain Berset, whom he also met recently in Yerevan within the framework of the 17th Summit of the International Organization of La Francophonie.

The opening ceremony of the Forum was attended by high-ranking officials from Switzerland, UNCTAD members states, world business community, investors and representatives of international organizations.

The World Investment Forum is one of the leading international and representative forums dedicated to investments and sustainable development during which the global challenges in the investment field and the ways to overcome them in the current era of globalization and industrialization are being discussed.

This year more than 4000 representatives from 160 countries, including leaders of multiple transnational corporations from different states, influential investment funds, major companies are participating in the Forum.

The opening of the Forum was followed by the UN investment promotion award ceremony which was also attended by President Sarkissian. Those companies, which recorded excellent results in the implementation of the UN sustainable development goals, in particular in fighting poverty, ensuring quality education and health, flight against climate change, have received awards. The Armenian President handed over an award to the Indian Invest India agency.

Thereafter, President Sarkissian visited the Armenian pavilion opened at the Investment Camp of the World Investment Forum. Armenia’s investment environment, attractiveness and competitive advantages, as well as tourism opportunities were presented in the pavilion.

The President got acquainted with the materials in the pavilion and talked to visitors.


Where are bread eaters? Bread production keeps dropping in Armenia
/Oct 23/Panorama/Hasmik Hakobyan/

Bread and flour production volumes continue dropping in Armenia, according to the latest figures released by the National Statistical Committee. 

Armenia produced 2.4 percent less bread from January to August 2018 compared to the same period last year.

The first eight months of this year also saw a sharp decline in flour production, which cut down by around 30 percent to some 76,023 tons. 

Speaking to Panorama.am, Director of Sevan Bakery Ashot Avetisyan said his factory’s bread output has not declined yet, but is expected to drop in autumn months, linking it to mass home bread-baking typical to the period.

According to the director, in recent months many in the capital Yerevan have also turned to handmade bread. “People try to save money in this way,” he says. 

In parallel to low breadmaking volumes, production of lavash, traditional Armenian thin bread, has risen in the country conditioned with its increased consumption.

“I guess people have realized that the best bread type is lavash, which has higher calorific value: 1 kg lavash is equal to 1,5 kg bread,” he said.

Speaking about bread prices, Avetisyan refuted claims that lavash is more expensive than other bread types. “1 kg lavash is priced at 450-470 drams, while 1 kg bread – at 450-500 drams,” he said.

Economist Vahagn Khachatryan links falling bread production volumes with a decline in population numbers.   

“The lower the population, the lower the consumption and, therefore, production volumes,” he told Panorama.am.

The economist says bread production could also cut down if Armenia saw a strong economic growth, which would boost people’s buying capacity to further lead to lower bread or other flour-made products consumption in their daily diet.

“But, obviously, it is not the case here; population is decreasing, so bread and flour production is falling. There is no other explanation here. We can’t state that people have started to consume healthier food in Armenia, it does not refer to our country,” he said.

Meantime, the economist states declined bread output cannot also be conditioned with people’s reduced buying power.

“Bread and potato are leading food types in lower-income countries like ours, so the talk cannot go about low consumption here. Today, bread is the most affordable food,” he said.

The economist pointed to the migration issue persisting in the country, calling on the government to implement serious programs in this regard given its negative impact on demography.

“Even the experts state that deaths will outnumber births in two years in Armenia. This has always been on the agenda, and I believe the government will draw appropriate conclusions and come up with solutions,” he said, pointing out to immigration as the only tool to handle the issue.

The economist also pointed to misleading statistics as a possible reason behind Armenia’s decreased bread production, questioning their reliability.
 

Armenia possesses great potential and ambitious programs – President Sarkissian
/Oct 24/Panorama/

President Armen Sarkissian, who is in Switzerland on a working visit, on October 24, in Geneva met with the Secretary General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Mukhisa Kituyi.

As the press department at the president’s Office reported, Sarkissian stressed the importance of the UNCTAD’s assistance to the economy of our country.

Noting that in different areas of economy, such as information technologies, education, and agriculture Armenia possesses great potential and ambitious programs, President Sarkissian said that our country anticipates active participation of the international financial institutions to the implementation of various programs.

The Secretary General of UNCTAD in his turn hailed Armenia’s growing participation in different programs.  At the meeting, the parties discussed Armenia’s investment policies, external debt management, and issues related to the deepening of cooperation.
 

The government to hold ‘Armenian Davos’
/Oct 24/ARKA/

YEREVAN – The Armenian government intends to hold an economic forum with the broad participation of representatives of Armenian business circles, the acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said today in the parliament.
“We are thinking now about the venue of the forum, choosing between the towns of Jermuk, Dilijan or Tsaghkadzor. This forum, conditionally speaking, will become the” Armenian Davos “, where all the Armenian business, political and economic elite will be present, ideas will be generated, and concrete tasks will be solved, “said Pashinyan.
The resort town of Tsaghkadzor used to host an international economic forum called “Bridge” since 2014 until 2013. It was informally called the “Armenian Davos”.


Armenian president urges international financial institution to support projects in his country
/Oct 24/ARKA/

YEREVAN – During a meeting in Geneva with Secretary General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Mukisa Kitui, Armenia’s President  Armenian Sarkissian urged  international financial institutions to get involved in the implementation of various projects in his country.
Armen Sarkissian is visiting Switzerland October 22-25 to participate  in the Sixth World Investment Forum 2018, organized by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva and in another  international forum Crans Montana. 
Sarkissian’s press office quoted him as saying that the Armenian government  emphasizes  the importance of UNCTAD assistance to the Armenian economy.
Noting that Armenia has great potential and ambitious projects in various sectors of the economy, including information technology, education and  agriculture, President Sarkissian  said that his country expects active participation of international financial institutions in the implementation of various projects.
UNCTAD Secretary General, in turn, highly appreciated the growing participation of Armenia in various programs.

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