“Government supports agreements between Armenian and Italian businessmen” - Armenian-Italian business forum held in Yerevan
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attended the opening of the first Armenian-Italian business forum.
Greeting the forum participants, the Prime Minister wished them successful proceedings. The Head of Government highlighted the contribution made by the Italian Embassy in Armenia and Ambassador Vincenzo Del Monaco in organizing the event.
“A year ago, Armenia faced dramatic political changes that were crowed with an unprecedented event, a non-violent velvet popular revolution, and democracy triumphed in Armenia without any violence. I want to stress the fact that we managed to ensure that no external political force be involved in the solution of internal political issues in Armenia. This was crucial due to which our society managed to form a consensus that Armenia should be a democratic country with the rule of law, so that people would have the opportunity to develop their talents, and thereby rebuild the country, their homeland, the economy of the Republic of Armenia,” Nikol Pashinyan said.
According to the Prime Minister, over the past one year his government managed to eradicate systemic corruption in Armenia politically and eliminate monopolies. “I say “politically,” because those companies that used to have dominant positions for many years have built up experience, sales networks, capital, but on the other hand, they no longer have privileges that they had before, namely an exclusive position on the domestic market.
However, I want to emphasize that these companies have not ceased their activities in Armenia. And I deem it extremely important to emphasize how balanced our approach is to economic entities and economic activity. We had another exceptional event last year: despite the revolution, there has not been any single case of redistribution of property in the country,” the Prime Minister said, adding that property rights are guaranteed in Armenia.
The Head of Government underscored that no economic upheavals were stated notwithstanding last year’s major political changes: the financial market remained stable, with the country going upwards ever since the revolution.
“In the first quarter of this year, economic growth was 7.1%, with a record 9.2% economic activity index registered in April. Let it be said that this is a unique phenomenon in history, when a country avoids economic turbulences after such large-scale changes, which means that as a matter of fact, Armenia has a business-friendly environment. Our strategy is to translate the political revolution into an economic one, so that the country could come up with an economic breakthrough,” Nikol Pashinyan said, adding that the Government has identified three priority areas - technology, tourism and agriculture.
The Prime Minister noted that agriculture needs to be transformed, too: it should not continue as traditional agriculture, but while preserving the best traditions, it should meet highest environmental standards, based on new technologies and increased productivity.
“In general, our vision of the Republic of Armenia and the economic environment is as follows: we say that we are going to make Armenia a paradise for talented people. We intend to create an ecosystem in Armenia, where all talented individuals may have the opportunity to realize and develop their abilities, get richer and enrich others.
This is just what we see as a key priority. We are confidently and firmly going along this path, and today we are on the threshold of another important stage, which I think must complete our roadmap of economic reforms and changes. We are talking about the reform of the judicial system, when every investor will have the judicial system as the guarantor of his or her investment, property and safety. I say all this to show that you have come at the right time to the Republic of Armenia, when the Government intends to provide the necessary conditions for developing the creative potential of your companies,” the Prime Minister said.
Touching on the Armenian-Italian economic exchanges, Nikol Pashinyan stated that they are on the rise at this point of time. According to the Prime Minister, those economic ties are traditional, underpinned by human, cultural and humanitarian components, because our peoples are too close in their perception and traditions.
“There are traditionally warm relations between our peoples and countries, which provide favorable prerequisites and conditions for the development of economic relations between our countries for Italian entrepreneurs to invest in Armenia.
For many years, economic activity corresponding to the Soviet perception dominated in the Republic of Armenia, but I also want to say that a layer of modern-type innovative business was shaped during the years of independence.
These people have prepared Armenia for an economic breakthrough, and I think that there are all conditions and prerequisites for this. I invite our Italian colleagues to take part in the breakthrough, get richer and enrich the Republic of Armenia.
You are welcome to the Republic of Armenia! I welcome your intention to engage in economic activities in the Republic of Armenia and I also welcome the principle voiced by the Ambassador that this forum should seek specific results.
I hope Armenian businessmen, Armenian companies and Italian businessmen and companies will find each other and be able to conclude mutually beneficial contracts and agreements.
You may rest assured that the Government of the Republic of Armenia is firmly committed to your upcoming agreements, and our task is to make all your agreements a reality without any impediment,” Nikol Pashinyan concluded.
The Armenian-Italian Business Forum is dedicated to transport and energy infrastructures, environment, construction, smart cities and rehabilitation.
The event was organized by the Office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, the Italian Embassy in Armenia, ICE (Italian Trade Agency), the Moscow Office of Technology, Industry, Energy and the Environment, as well as ANCE (National Association of Builders of Italy), OICE (Association of Engineering, Architectural, Technical) - economic, consulting organizations), Anie (Italian Association of Power Generation Companies) and GdP Group Simest.
The Armenian-Italian Business Forum, which is attended by representatives of local institutions engaged in the aforementioned areas, Italian associations and Simest, aims to present the most interesting infrastructure projects to Italian business circles and create opportunities for cooperation with Italian infrastructure and transport companies. One of the goals of the forum is to create an online network of Italian associations and their foreign equivalents within the framework of ICE.