Nano Arghutyan

18:35:16 - 10/06/2009

Newspapers are overwhelmed with rumors that a watershed created
between the government and National Assembly of Armenia in the form
of the package of tax amendments. No one voices anything, but it is
understandable that the government decided to take the bull by the
horns and implement the pledge given at the beginning of this year,
"to bring the major business in the tax field". The parliament is
also assuring that the true intentions of the government were to
establish their own control over the business, and the state will not
get anything from this. As the saying goes, the usual redistribution
of property.

How the things are in reality is not known. In any case, nothing
concrete is said, the discussions are not carried out on the economic
plane, but on the political or on the personal one. The parliamentary
members, dwelling on the contradiction of the bill of the government to
the Constitution, do not clarify to what articles it contradicts. Gagik
Tsarukyan states that he is not going to interfere in the adoption
of the law in order not to be accused of bias. The Republican Party
does not bring weighty arguments either, assuring that "this way is
needed". The Dashnaktsutyun and the Heritage are again against for
political reasons. There seems to be no one else.

And if you look at the bill not from the point of view of a businessman
but an ordinary citizen, it will bring nothing new. According to
the authors of the bill, the presence of tax inspectors in the
major enterprises is aimed at the control of the actual volume of
products manufactured and sold, and thus paid taxes. No one hides
the real scale of products, they are recorded by the tax bodies,
perhaps with some omissions. The local oligarchs get richer at the
expense of unpaid taxes and super profit, and who wants to help the
state, should settle right this area. If a product is sold at almost
its double cost, this means that the manufacturer or importer robs
people. The state must stand up for people, creating such conditions
for the major importers to be unprofitable to have super profit. Here
is the law, which would be unanimously welcomed. But now, apparently,
the state supports the importers.

Commenting on the bill, the parliamentary member from the ARF Vahan
Hovhannisyan said that the government should recognize that its whole
economic policy failed. Perhaps that is true. The external state
debt of Armenia by the end of 2008 amounted to 1.577 billion. Such
data has been presented by the Deputy Minister of Finance Atom
Janjughazyan. According to him, the external debt of Armenia on the
basis of the data of 2008 amounted 13, 2% while the country's GDP in
2007 was 15.7%.

"Armenia's external debt has recently exceeded 1.5 billion dollars
and with the further growth of the negative foreign trade surplus in
the next few years this figure could be critical for the economy",
- said the academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Abel
Aganbegyan. "The import in the country is 5.5 times higher than the
exports. Armenia's debt is now rising disastrously, and we should
think about reducing the food imports on the account of the local
production growth", - said the academician.

The academician noted that the current monetary policy of the Armenian
authorities is not directed at the development of the import. "If you
keep the dram at that level, your import will destroy all the scores
and it will become unprofitable to produce anything in Armenia. It
is necessary to protect your economy ",-said the academician.