Nikol Pashinyan briefs Carnegie Europe Research Center experts on his vision of Armenia’s development
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan arrived in the Kingdom of Belgium on a working visit. The Premier’s first port of call was the Carnegie Europe Research Center (CERC) where he met with CERC experts, as well as with a number of high-ranking EU officials.
The Prime Minister first touched upon the non-violent, peaceful velvet revolution in Armenia and the ongoing reforms, introduced his government’s steps aimed at combating corruption, as well as other priorities, including the ones targeting the economy, EU-Armenia relations. Nikol Pashinyan answered the questions of interest to the audience.
“We confronted our own fears and undergone a revolution of love and tolerance, removed a self-reproducing political power, thus stating to ourselves and the world, that never again are we going to allow one man deciding for everyone. The citizens of Armenia have rejected such endemic diseases as corruption, embezzlement, injustice, poor governance. We are in a new phase of rapid changes towards more prosperous, inclusive and modernized Armenia,” Nikol Pashinyan said.
The head of government stressed that there is no geopolitical context in this revolution and the new government does not project any major foreign policy changes or U-turns. “Armenia's new government is committed to undertake all necessary steps to eradicate any such barriers as may slow down our development,” the Premier pointed out.
Nikol Pashinyan stressed that the fight against all forms of corruption is a top priority on the Government’s policy agenda, adding that light has already been shed on number of high-profile cases of corruption.
“Today, previously privileged people face the full power of justice. All trials will be conducted strictly in line with the Law. Another important commitment is to organize truly free and fair elections. Now Armenians know that their voice matters. From now on there will be no possibility to manipulate the electoral process and undermine the trust of citizens. Therefore, we have initiated an inclusive process of amending the Electoral Code. We will ensure the independence of judiciary. We are resolved to break the vicious practices of former judicial system mired in corruption,” the Prime Minister said, noting that the aforementioned measures will create favorable conditions for economic development, which the Government regards as a key element of national security.
Nikol Pashinyan said the Government will provide a leveled ground for competitive business activities in every field of the economy. He noticed that in fact, the most competitive fields of Armenia’s economy - IT sector, tourism and agriculture - are rapidly growing.
“Our geographic location, human resources with deep knowledge and understanding of different cultures, our balanced foreign policy are competitive features of our country and society makes me confident that we are going succeed. We are a full member of the Eurasian Economic Union, which has opened tremendous opportunities for our economic development. Armenia is prepared to bridge the interests and positions of the EAEU and EU, as much as accepted by both sides,” Pashinyan said.
With reference to Armenia’s European agenda, the head of government noted that the EU has been an important partner for Armenia in furthering comprehensive institutional and legal reforms.
“The signing of the CEPA turned a new page in our relations with the EU. Its effective implementation will strengthen democracy and human rights, enable better investment climate, increased stability and predictability for business,” Nikol Pashinyan said.
Speaking about the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the Prime Minister stressed that Armenia is committed to the peaceful settlement of the conflict based on the principles and approaches proposed by the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs, which is the internationally mandated format of negotiations.
“Self-determination of the people of Artsakh has no alternative. The conflict should be settled through a mutual compromise by all sides. As any other democracy, Armenia is committed to settling the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict exclusively through peaceful means. Any attempt to resolve this conflict the military way is an attack against democracy, human rights and peace,” Nikol Pashinyan emphasized.