February 18 2014

In the conversation with Aravot.am, political scientist Gagik
Hambaryan, referring to the assessments made by the President of
Armenia at the VHD Union Board session regarding the economy, expressed
the opinion that the development of our economy is more hampered by
subjective reasons. "I'm not an economist, I do not want to turn to
the numbers voiced by the President, but being an ordinary citizen of
the Republic of Armenia, I must say that our economic problems today
are more subjective in nature than objective. Just the fact that we
have oligarchic, and monopolistic economy in Armenia, it is enough
for the level of our economic development be quite low.

Secondly, it is very strange that the leadership of our country does
not refer to the shameful situation existing in the banking system,
when in not any normal country of the world, developed or developing,
there is no 18-24 percent annual interest rate. I ask you, where
do you take these figures from? The authorities in Europe, Russia
and in majority of the former Republics of the Soviet Union, or the
businessmen sponsored by thereof take money from European largest
banks at 0.8 to 2 percent annual interest and give it to banks at 5-6
percent. The banks give the money to citizens at 2 times more, i.e.,
10-14 percent. The situation in the Republic of Armenia is completely
different, the banks receive up to 10 percent and give out to the
population at 18-24 percent annual interest. It goes without saying
that 60-70 percent of the people should not be able to pay these
loans. As a result, they lose their property placed as a collateral
to the bank, which we see now. It also brings out the fact that most
of the money does not serve the goal of economic development. There is
such a thing. It would be good for the President of the Armenia to pay
attention to the banking sector and monopolies," says the political
scientist. According to him, it is just a shame that one of the world
famous French "Carrefour" hypermarket chain is not allowed to open
a store in Armenia. "There is no even "McDonalds" in the Republic of
Armenia. It is really a shame. And do you know why it is a shame?

These are global brands, the activities of which in the Republic
of Armenia can be an incentive for other investors to make their
investments in our country, too. I am certainly not saying that our
fast food industry is on a very low level. No, it is in very good
condition, but let this "McDonalds" also be, why not? Why should
"Pepsi" be, why should "Coca-Cola" be, but not "McDonalds". Or, they
do everything for Carrefour to abandon the idea of opining its chain
of stores in the Republic of Armenia, it would be just a shame for our
country. You see, even the Ambassador of France to Armenia interferes
in this issue, as I see from the side, the Ambassadors of other
countries to Armenia are getting involved in the matter. It's a shame,
isn't it? To open a store, we allow the issue be settled at the level
of European ambassadors. Is it something new?" says Gagik Hambaryan.


Read more at: http://en.aravot.am/2014/02/18/163884/