Investments [in Armenia] are now zero. Our program notes the drawing of at least $500mn investments a year; I am confident that in the second year the investments will make $1 billion. Robert Kocharyan—the second President, leader of the "Armenia" bloc which will run in Sunday’s snap parliamentary elections, and its candidate for prime minister—stated this during their election meeting with the residents of Martuni town in Gegharkunik Province.
The second President recalled that in 1997—the year before he took office—the share of Armenia’s small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) was 16-17 percent of the GDP, but in 2008—when he stepped down from this office—it was 46 percent. "We were pursuing a targeted policy for SME development in the case of a 10.5% economic growth. The World Bank had called us [Armenia] the 'Caucasian Tiger.' The goal was to make the share reach 70% of the GDP. In order to promote SMEs, a special law was adopted and a special structure was created in 2020. [But] about a year ago, half of it was shut, all provincial offices were shut, "Kocharyan said, emphasizing that the development of Armenia’s SMEs will be one of the key tasks.