“The country is collapsing, the country is insolvent, “hardly makes ends meet” by taking new borrowings,” said Hrant Bagratyan, a candidate nominated by the list of Free Democrats, during the event ahead of the parliamentary elections organized by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation on March 10.
He noted that the state does not have the opportunity to educate everyone, “In our country, even the state-funded higher education must be with the loan – 0.1 percent, and when someone receives a state-funded higher education, he can leave Armenia if he has worked for 8 years in the country. We did not understand how 49 thousand people left last year. 30 thousand out of the 49 thousand had higher education. The education for each one by domestic prices is approximately 10 thousand dollars.”
Hrant Bagratyan said that in his opinion, the ruling Republican Party will have a competitive program to Free Democrats but these clauses are not covered in their program. In his words, if Armenia were not a member of the Eurasian Economic Union it would be in a better situation, “Do not forget that we were in the free trade zone with these same countries since 2011. Nothing is changed in the trade, it was a tax-free trade. Now, in the beginning, we were not in favor of it, we were against the Eurasian Economic Union but on December 27, 2016, a terrible event happened: Armenia without making any remarks signed a new Customs Code of the Eurasian Economic Union.
Under this Code, since July 1 this year, the privileges are lifted. Why should we bring diesel from Iran and pay huge duty fee? Why? It is our neighbor and our suitable partner. If the Eurasian Economic Union like the European Union agree that Armenia is in a free trade zone both with Iran, the EU, the third world countries and the Eurasian Economic Union, but it is impossible.” Hrant Bagratyan added that it is better now better to withdraw from the EaEU than later, “By withdrawing, we will stay in the free trade zone. And if you may say that well, you will see what Russia will do afterward; look, no unions occur under a threat. It’s better now than later, now, let us be honest where are you taking us.”