2019 August 5
Anti-Corruption & News - Aug/5/2019:: Economy; Budget; Surplus; Industry :::: Pashinyan in Artsakh :::: Government to tighten immigration rules to prevent abuse :::: Mayor and officials; illegal privatization :::: Investigative Committee stats :::: Bad asphalt = $0 :::: Sports :::: other stories
Disclaimer: All the accused are innocent until proven guilty by the court of law, even if they may sound as being guilty. Currency in Armenian Drams unless specified otherwise.
Grandmaster Karen Grigoryan wins a Portugal chess cup with 9 out of 9 points. He also set a world record by gaining a 3103 coefficient, which is higher than the previous 3098 set by world's second player Fabiano Caruana. 👏
Youth world championship in wrestling. 3 bronze and 1 silver medals by Team Armenia.
Sevan Startup Summit 2019. Some entrepreneurs display their ideas.
A US program will finance the installation of a garbage collector on Poqr Vedi water reservoir. It's been tested few days ago and picked up lots of trash.
Azerbaijan wants to create a center that educates its students about Armenian culture, language, politics. (Expect to see Azeri trolls writing in Armenian.)
Yerevan municipality has taken over the garbage collection process in Davtashen district. They promise to fix the broken bins and the piles of crap. Sanitek private firm has been accused of being unable to do their work fully.
A medical truck will travel around 3 provinces and provide a free mammogram cancer screening for women aged 50-69.
130 high tech firms are using a government program that encourages business growth. 90 of them will create 800 jobs with avg $1,000 salary by 2022. 20% of these firms were created by repatriated diasporans.
PM Pashinyan says they are working on a bill to allow the authorities not to pay the construction companies if their asphalt quality is bad. It's also possible that deliberately making bad road repairs could become a felony (laying hot asphalt under a ran?). He added that bad quality road repair companies will be pushed out of market.
Pashinyan says he is pleasantly surprised that the public supported the idea that forest protection ("national treasure") should be prioritized over the welfare of 100 ("illegal") loggers in Ijevan, especially since cutting those trees doesn't solve the poverty issue. "The revolution of the mind has begun."
Pashinyan said the privatization of army food delivery system continues. 6 firms are delivering better food to 8 military units.
Pashinyan said the former government failed to create institutes to solve people's problems. New admins inherited a paralyzed system of governance, and there was nothing there when you remove the system of bribery and corruption, said PM, citing an examination of some kind of an internal report about the state of institutes created under HHK administration. PM said certain things need to be created from zero.
The government wants to better control who enters and stays in the country.
They will implement an electronic system that will monitor the work contracts signed between Armenian companies and foreign workers.
Foreign workers currently receive a 1-year residency permit even if their work lasts a few months. The changes could eliminate that possibility and ask the worker to leave once the short contract is over. If the work contract lasts longer than 1 year, the worker would stay until the end of the contract.
Ministry says the changes are part of improving national security because Armenia is in a region with many conflicts, and that its priority is not to have more migrant workers but rather to focus on managing the arrivals/stays.
Protecting the domestic labor market is cited as one of the purposes of the proposed change.
PM Pashinyan is in Artsakh. He'll give a speech ahead of panarmenian Olympic games. He greeted the crowd as "proud citizens of Armenia and diasporan Armenians". Then begun chanting "reunite" slogan widely used during the 1980s Artsakh-Armenia re-unification struggle.
PM said solving problems through violence should be a thing of a past (few incident involving prez candidates happened recently) and that the upcoming Artsakh elections should be peaceful. They won't tolerate violence or foreign interference. Said Artsakh needs an anti-corruption fight to recover stolen funds. Said the rumors that the government is giving Artsakh to Azerbaijan is pointless, and that any decision made by the governments must be acceptable by the publics.
Spoke about the strategic goals until 2050: create 1.5mln jobs, increase population to 5mln, find work for 2.5mln citizens, improve the industry, raise GDP by 15x, have at least 5 Armenian firms with $10bln value, 10k startups, raise salaries by 7x, be on top-20 list in terms of army, be on top-10 in intelligence agency efficiency, increase healthcare expenditure 20x and make sure everyone gets healthcare , increase the role of education, increase tourism to 15mln, have the Armenian soccer team become a Euro or World champion (LMAO), win 25 gold medals in Olympics, have a world chess champion.
name tags https://youtu.be/mfvk5AHIapI
The history of Pan-Armenian Olympics https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pIR2wpWRKQ
Update: an explosion happened on Sevan highway last Friday. The target was former BHK MP and oligarch Shshi Melo's car. Thankfully he and his gold 555ԼԼ05 plates were unharmed.
Shortly after the police arrived, Melo's brother instructed Melo's bodyguard to drive the car away from the scene, despite being told not to do so because of the pending forensics examination. The bodyguard was later found and returned with the car. Brother and bodyguard are facing charges related to deliberate obstruction and placing policeman life at risk (almost ran over a cop while escaping). One other person has been arrested in connection with the case, but the brother isn't under an arrest anymore.
The bomb was detonated from a nearby abandoned restaurant building at the moment when Melo's car was traveling nearby. The detonator and the wires were found.
Update: a few dozen Armenian workers in Sochi, Russia airport had complained about an alleged ethnic discrimination, saying that hundreds of Armenians were fired since last year. 29 of them signed an open petition. The airport denied discrimination and claimed it as a work standard related layoff.
On weekend, one of the workers released an audio conversion allegedly showing that the airport admins called the worker and berated them for signing under the public petition, which publicized the story. Admins said the worker should have waited and remained silent, and that not all terminations are decided by the airport admins themselves.
(I haven't been able to listen the tape).
An appeals court Judge has ruled that the investigators do not have the right to search the office of judge Davit Grigoryan. The latter was reported in September 2018 for allegedly falsifying court documents to cover up his inability to begin a trial in time. The judge would later be picked to hear the Kocharyan case, before having his verdict overthrown. The Supreme Court Council suspended the judge after finding the investigators' claims to be credible.
No criminal charges will be pressed against the men who were suspected of beating an anti-Kocharyan activist for verbally insulting Artsakh president Bako Sahakyan. One ARF member was arrested few months ago, before several more ARF members, presumably falsely, claimed they participated in the event. The case has been dropped for unclear reasons.
Hetq outlet published a report about how former officials authorized one another to rent a land containing forests, to legally cut the trees and built structures in place, but haven't planted new trees to substitute the loss as mandated by the contract.
In 2006-2007, former general prosecutor Aghvan Hovsepyan received an permit to rent a land in Jermuk forests to build a hydro power plant. 80% of the building company's shares were later sold to former Constitutional Court chief (later Supreme Court chief, before resigning this year) Gagik Harutyunyan's family. The other 20% of the shares belonged to Naghash Hakobyan, a former Foreign Ministry official.
In a 2014 document, they were mandated to plant 500 new trees to substitute for the cut ones, and to take care of them for at least 4 years. This hasn't been done so far. More details inside...
A mayor and several state land property registration officials are facing felony charges for illegal privatization and appropriation of a water pipes between 2015-2019.
The Investigative Committee releases stats about its own anti-corruption fight for 2018 and 2019.
In 1H19 they had 1016 criminal cases against 699 people (401 public officials) alleging damages to state. 1.8bln funds recovered (vs 0.2bln as of 1H18) and transferred to Committee's bank account. A third on all open cases in 1H19 were due to citizens reporting corruption.
In 2018 as a whole they examined 1,233 cases, up from 542 in 2017.
economy & people
1H19 vs 1H18 the industrial production up 6.9%.
Mining industry up 6.8%. Manufacturing up 8.7%. Metal production down 2.5%.
Food and alcohol up 7.8% each. Tobacco up 16.7%.
Manufacture of jewelry products down 38%. Manufacture of non-metallic mineral products up 37%.
The legal practice of cutting trees for woodworking: down 22%.
Textile up 35.5%. High tech industry up 6%.
Baby-boy manufacturing down 1%, baby-girl manufacturing up 0.2%. 110 boys were born per 100 girls. Last year it was 112/100. Before that it was 114/100. The recommended ratio is 105/100.
As for 2018 vs 2017, internet users up 10% and mobile users up 3%.
Foreign debt reduced by $120 million or 2.1% in the past 15 months. It's at $5.48bln.
1H19 budget collected 758bln while the government spent 637bln. That is a 121bln surplus, while in 1H18 it had a 4bln deficit.
Revenues rose 25% or 149bln, while expenditures rose 4% or 26bln.
Taxes from income rose by 38%. Taxes from profit rose by 70%. Taxes from VAT rose by 35%. Taxes from Turnover Tax rose by 72%.
Message brought to you by Uncle Samvel. Have YOU 👉 paid your taxes?
Link to original report: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/cmfrwc/anticorruption_news_aug52019_economy_budget/
|2018 Daily Armenia Reports|
|2019 Daily Armenia Reports|