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Vice Speaker of Armenian Parliament: Madrid Principles are not the key element of the Karabakh peace process

US "deeply concerned" on criminal charges against Yunus family

US Department of State: It will take weeks to restore full visa processing capacity

VTB critical of EU's decision to restrict its access to capital markets

Rostelecom launches 40Gbs network in Yerevan

Electric power tariffs rise for population of Armenia on 1 August

Audit Chamber of Armenia calls silly statement claiming that ex-head of Pension Fund 'paid' $250,000 to Audit Chamber's leadership

Orange Foundation helps opening a new computer center in Pemzashen village, Shirak marz

Nominee for U.S. ambassador to Turkey: "Facilitating Armenia's regional integration by opening its border with Turkey will be one of my key goals as Ambassador"

Georgi Kolarov: The second Nagorno-Karabakh war is inevitable

Russian Embassy in Armenia gives a harsh response to the U.S. Embassy

Participants in Beeline's Fortune drawing campaign awarded prizes

Yerevan-Sevan-Ijevan-Azeri border highway to be open in late August

Armenian FM: Through its destructive stance Azerbaijan hinders the Nagorno-Karabakh peace progress

Up to 45% of Armenian citizens are potential emigrants

US Embassy urges Armenian businessmen to refrain from contacts with Russian companies

A leopard family in the south of Armenia gives birth to two cubs

Two Armenian soldiers die because of the Azerbaijani sabotage attack at the line of contact

Human rights activist Leyla and Arif Yunus are accused of secret collaboration with Armenian special services

Member-churches of World Council of Churches going to recognize Armenian Genocide in 2015

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Electric Networks of Armenia is going to dispute Public Services Regulatory Commission's decision to impose a 15mln AMD fine on it

Economist: In face of economic sanctions against Russia, it is necessary to speed up the process for creating Eurasian Economic Union

Economist: The West's sanctions against Russia will affect the Armenian economy

Rostelecom launches online payment service

Public Services Regulatory Commission of Armenia imposes a 15mln AMD fine on Electric Networks of Armenia

Oppositionist: Interests and viewpoints of Stepanakert do not necessarily coincide with those of Yerevan

Oppositionist: Interests and viewpoints of Stepanakert do not necessarily coincide with those of Yerevan

Ashot Manuicharyan: Armenian President's function is to answer "yes, sir!" and to go do it

Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan criticizes the ICRC again

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Official stance of VTB Bank OJSC and VTB Bank (Armenia) CJSC on U.S. sanctions

RPA member: Nagorno-Karabakh Prime Minister's statement had no message to negotiators

Ashot Manucharyan: Armenia may face chaos or isolation at any moment

Armenia joins World Day against Trafficking in Persons

Lake Sevan is among top ten attractions in post-Soviet preferred by Russian people

Leyla Yunus is at Prosecutor General's Office, Arif Yunus decides to "give up"

Pre-Parliament: The overarching goal for all Armenians is the formation of a representative government in Armenia

The OSCE is ready to assist in any way possible to stop the cease-fire violations in karabakh conflict zone, Andrzej Kasprzyk says

US Department of State: Media outlets of Armenia published inaccurate articles portraying religious minorities as criminals and spies

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Public Services Regulatory Commission decides to reduce tariffs of some services of ArmenTel CJSC

Poaching and illegal hunting tours endanger birds in Armenia

The NKR premier: The Madrid Principles are certainly unacceptable to us

Armenian Copper Programme cuts blister copper production by 13.5%

ANCA calls for increased US aid and trade with Armenia

  • Friday, January 18, 14:03

 The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) has called on members Congress to appropriate increased economic assistance for Armenia and to expand programs to promote U.S.-Armenia bilateral trade and investment.

Among the favorable findings referenced by the ANCA, in a letter sent this week to legislative offices calling for expanded trade promotion and increased assistance to Armenia, were the following:

- The World Bank, in its 2013 Doing Business report, ranked Armenia #32 worldwide in terms of overall ease of doing business, #11 for ease of starting a business, and #4 for ease of registering property.

- The Wall Street Journal/Heritage Foundation's 2013 Index of Economic Freedom rates Armenia #38 worldwide, and #17 among the 43 European states, ahead of Belgium, France, and Spain.

- The World Economic Forum's 2012 Global Enabling Trade Report ranks Armenia #13 worldwide for market access and #59 in terms of the overall extent to which it has developed institutions, policies, and services facilitating the free flow of goods over borders.

- Price Waterhouse Cooper, in its most recent Doing Business in Armenia guide, reported that, "Armenia encourages foreign trade and investment," and that, "[s]urveys suggest that Armenia is a relatively easy country in which to do business."

- The Millennium Challenge Corporation's 2013 scorecard reports that Armenia is rated in the 97th percentile in terms of both favorable trade policy and business start up, and in the 91st percentile with regard to regulatory quality.

- Freedom House, in its 2013 report on Freedom in the World, upgraded Armenia to a 5 rating for political rights.

In addition to these favorable indicators, Armenia has been a strong security partner for the United States, having sent troops to support US-led coalition efforts in Iraq, to assist NATO operations in Afghanistan, and to take part in international peacekeeping in Kosovo.

In terms of trade promotion, the ANCA - along with the American Chamber of Commerce in Armenia and major corporations, including Microsoft, FedEx, and NASDAQ - have called on the U.S.  government to respond favorably to the Armenian government's interest in negotiating a badly-needed U.S.-Armenia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement and a long-overdue Double Tax Treaty. The ANCA looks to the Obama Administration to honor the President's commitments to expand U.S.-Armenia trade and investment, and is calling upon Congress to support the growth of mutually beneficial economic bilateral relations.

The legislative memo noted that, "it is in this spirit, and upon the solid foundation and friendship of the past two decades, that we call upon you to support the appropriation of increased economic assistance for Armenia and the expansion of programs to promote mutually beneficial U.S-Armenia bilateral trade and investment (such as a badly-needed U.S.-Armenia Trade and Investment Framework greement and a long-overdue Double Tax Treaty)."

The level of US aid to Armenia, which hit a high of $174 million in Fiscal Year 2003, has been steadily declining over the past two decades, as a result of both calls by successive Administrations for cuts, and growing Congressional pressure for reductions in spending. The Obama Administration, which came into office with aid levels at more than $60 million, has, despite the President's campaign pledge to maintain assistance to Armenia, sought reductions in the Armenia aid program. The overall economic and military aid level for Armenia in the most recent appropriations cycle is less than $45 million. The ANCA is asking for at least $50 million in FY2014 aid to Armenia. The President's proposed FY14 budget will be released in the coming weeks.

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