News from Karabagh


The year was concluded without financial commitments, Artsakh president says
/Feb 1/Panorama/

President of the Artsakh Republic Bako Sahakyan chaired today the meeting of the Government.
As the press department at the Government reported, in his speech on the issues on the meeting agenda the President summed up the results of the country’s socioeconomic development in 2018, defined the objectives for 2019, giving corresponding instructions for their proper fulfillment.

Bako Sahakyan pointed out that overall the scheduled programs were effectively forged ahead in 2018, ensuring economic development.
The Head of the State mentioned that GDP reached around 303 billion Armenian Drams registering a double-digit economic growth based on progress in mining and energy, as well as commerce and services sectors.

The President noted that the year was concluded without financial commitments, qualifying this fact as positive sign of development.
Among important achievements President Sahakyan mentioned the fact that Artsakh not only reached self-sufficiency in electrical power generation but also became an electricity exporting country.

“The formation, maintenance and development of a relevant business atmosphere, creation of an appropriate environment for small- and medium-sized businesses are among the important incentives for dynamic development of the economy. Among the cornerstone objectives of our economic policy is making this very business environment a competitive advantage of our economy”, highlighted Bako Sahakyan in his remarks.

The President stressed that the Artsakh Republic is a social state, and the social sphere remains a priority on the country’s development agenda, noting that the state would continue implementing diverse programs aimed at enhancing socioeconomic welfare of the population, with a special emphasis on the vulnerable segments of the society, especially, the families of perished freedom fighters and servicemen, families with many children and low-incomes.
Touching upon the 2019 objectives, the Head of the State noted the necessity of doing the utmost for the implementation of all the planned programs, stressing the need of optimization and effective usage of public resources.

Bako Sahakyan: Artsakh`s economy has achieved double-digit growth in 2018
/Feb 4/Arminfo/Alina Hovhannisyan/

In 2018, the GDP of the Republic of Artsakh was 303 billion drams, providing double-digit growth of the economy. This was stated by Artsakh President Bako Sahakyan at the first government meeting this year. According to him, the basis of growth was the increase in value added in such areas as  the mining industry, energy, trade and services. In particular, he stressed that energy is the most dynamically developing sector of the Artsakh economy. 

The number of small hydropower plants, according to Saakyan, increased by 5 in 2018, making a total of 21 stations, which led to an increase in electricity production by 19%. "This exceeded the level of consumption by 5%, which provided an opportunity to export electricity, the volume of which amounted to 17.2 million kW / h.", He said. In this vein, the head of the republic stressed the importance of ensuring an increase in electricity production in the near future, paying particular attention to protecting the environment. At the same time, Sahakyan informed that work is also being carried out on the implementation of alternative energy sources systems. The GDP per capita in the Republic of Artsakh in 2018 increased by $ 415, reaching $ 4,260. The amount of tax revenues and fines for the reporting period reached 53 billion drams, which is 34.6% more than a year ago. Referring to the preliminary data, the president noted that the growth of industrial production will be  registered at the level of 30%. At the same time, he stressed that positive results were also recorded in the field of agriculture. In this regard, Sahakyan noted that the Government of the Republic of Artsakh took a number of measures aimed at the integrated development of crop production, to the development of which the state sent 1 billion drams. This is the introduction of drip irrigation systems, the total area of which amounted to 622.5 hectares, of which 500 hectares fell on gardens and 122.5 hectares on tobacco fields and vegetables.

This all contributed to the development of gardening. In particular, the area for planting pomegranate trees increased by 11% to 1360 hectares. The yield of pomegranates was 2,600 tons, which is 80% more than a year ago. As the president said, this program will be implemented in 2019. 

Artsakh’s commercial banks, credit organizations annul millions in fines-penalties for customers in major support initiative
/Feb 4/

YEREVAN – Artsakh’s commercial banks and crediting organizations have annulled more than 210,813,000 drams in loan penalties and fines for 272 resident customers and 13 business clients, Artsakh’s State Minister Grigory Martirosyan said on Facebook.

Noting the support to be an important process, Martirosyan emphasized that the government of Artsakh highly respects the banking system’s and its independence’s role in the development of the country’s financial-economic sector.

“We are grateful to our partners of this sector for reaching out and pardoning the mentioned fines-penalties”, he said. At the same time, the State Minister called on citizens dealing with banks and loan organizations to demonstrate higher social responsibility.

Both sides to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be ready to move from words to deeds, Angela Merkel says
/Feb 1/ARKA/

YEREVAN – Both sides to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict should be ready to move from words to deeds, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said at a joint news conference today with the visiting Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan in Berlin.
"There is still a long road ahead that needs to be overcome,’ she said, adding that such a solution should be found that would satisfy all the sides. ‘Of course, the capabilities of the OSCE Minsk Group should be used too," she said.
Merkel also pointed out the importance of Armenia’s readiness for compromises in the negotiation process.
In turn, Pashinyan said that the process should be bilateral. "A few months ago I said in the Armenian parliament that any solution to the Karabakh conflict should be acceptable to the peoples of Armenia, Karabakh and Azerbaijan. I hoped that this statement would be followed by a similar statement from Azerbaijan, but, unfortunately, no official of that  country did even say a half-word that the solution should be acceptable to the peoples of Armenia and Karabakh," he said.
According to Pashinyan, the history of this statement alone clearly reflects the situation that has developed in the negotiation process.
“Since no equivalent statement came from Azerbaijan, we cannot have high hopes for progress on this issue. Of course, Armenia is committed exclusively to a peaceful settlement of the conflict,” said Pashinyan.
"The co-chairmen and the international community clearly said that finding a solution is on the agenda of the three parties to the conflict. The international community cannot resolve the conflict; it can only create a negotiating platform. I believe that the Minsk Group was successful in creating that platform," said Pashinyan.

Pashinyan says no much hope to move forward in the NK settlement amid Azerbaijani recent statements
/Feb 1/Panorama/

Any solution to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict should be acceptable to the people of Armenia, Artsakh and Azerbaijan, Armenia’s PM Nikol Pashinyan stated on Friday at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. As the PM said he hoped to hear similar statement from the Azerbaijani side, yet regretfully, no official from Azerbaijan has ever whispered an idea that the Nagorno Karabakh settlement should be acceptable also to the people of Armenia and Artsakh. In Pashinyan’s words, this situation clearly demonstrates the state of affairs in the peace process.
“Unless adequate statements are not coming from Azerbaijan, we cannot have high expectations to move forward in the process. The Republic of Armenia is definitely committed to the peaceful and negotiated settlement of the conflict. I want to stress that during our discussions I had clearly emphasized that as the Prime Minister of Armenia I am authorized to negotiate on behalf of the Republic of Armenia and cannot do on behalf of Nagorno Karabakh. The reason is that the people of Nagorno Karabakh do not participate in our elections, have not given a vote of confidence to me. Moreover, they have their own president and the parliament and the elected representatives of the Nagorno Karabakh people should speak on their behalf,” Pashinyan stressed. 

Pashinyan's refusal to negotiate Karabakh based on 'territories for peace' formula hard to understand – Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry
/Jan 31/Interfax – Russia & CIS Military Newswire/

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan's logic is hard to understand, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said in commenting on Pashinyan's remark that Yerevan would not hold negotiations on Nagorno-Karabakh based on the 'territories in exchange for peace' formula.

"Mr. Pashinyan's logic is hard to understand. As is well known, the negotiations on settling the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict ongoing under the aegis of the OSCE Minsk Group are based precisely on the withdrawal of the Armenian forces from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan," the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said.

"This requirement is present in four UN Security Council resolutions and in virtually all documents passed by international organizations toward settling the conflict. We wonder in this case whether Mr. Pashinyan's position means the refusal to negotiate," it said.

It had been reported earlier that, in taking questions from journalists, Pashinyan said Armenia would not discuss returning territory in exchange for peace in negotiations with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Cornerstone of talks on Karabakh conflict settlement is withdrawal of Armenian armed forces from occupied Azerbaijani lands
/Feb 1/AzerNews/

The cornerstone of the negotiations on the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the withdrawal of the Armenian armed forces from the occupied Azerbaijani territories, spokesperson for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry Leyla Abdullayeva told Trend.

Abdullayeva was commenting on Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s statement that "we will not discuss peace in exchange for the return of territories in the Nagorno-Karabakh issue."

"It is difficult to understand Pashinyan’s logic because the cornerstone of the negotiations on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict being conducted under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs is the withdrawal of the Armenian armed forces from the occupied Azerbaijani territories,” she added.

“Four well-known resolutions of the UN Security Council and almost all the documents adopted by international organizations regarding the settlement of the conflict envisage that,” she said.

“In this regard, a question arises: should this position of Pashinyan be regarded as his refusal to negotiate?"

The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.