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January 24
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YEREVAN. – We want to quickly implement programs for the digitalization of the economy and the transition to a green economy. Most importantly, we want to establish trade relations with European markets and the European economy, which can accelerate the region's rapprochement with the EU. Oliver Varhelyi, the European Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement, said this Friday in Yerevan.

He noted that in the case of Armenia, they propose five priorities which can considerably change the situation in the country and strengthen its economy. According to him, their respective program includes the development of transport links, the strengthening of competition in the southern regions of Armenia, the development of its energy supply and renewable energy, and the assistance to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). He added that the EU is allocating 1.6 billion euros for these programs—and for a period of four years—in Armenia.

Varhelyi reminded that the EU has already provided 9 to 10 million euros in aid, which will soon be provided to those affected by the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) conflict.

The EU is ready to play an active role in confidence-building in the post-conflict situation, first of all, in overcoming the humanitarian crisis and further restoring the economy of the conflict-affected region and surrounding areas, he added.

Acting Deputy Prime Minister of Armenia Mher Grigoryan, in his turn, noted that Armenia has received a largest amount of assistance from all the countries of the South Caucasus within the framework of this program. He noted that this project will focus on SME support, the construction of the North-South highway, investments in information technology, socioeconomic development of the southern regions of Armenia, and investments to the capital Yerevan as a smart and green city.

He also reminded about the implementation of the 2021-2027 joint program, which is connected with the restoration of Armenia’s economy, balanced development of its provinces, modernization of infrastructure, and so on.

"Armenia is very interested in starting negotiations with the EU on visa liberalization," the acting Deputy Prime Minister added.

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