A regular Cabinet meeting was held, chaired by Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan.
Before proceeding to the agenda, the Prime Minister gave a number of instructions. With reference to the Government’s policy of subsidizing the economic entities engaged in priority areas, the Prime Minister stated in part, “We have repeatedly talked about the need for providing targeted and effective assistance in priority sectors of Armenia’s economy. We believe the time has come for the Government to provide effective assistance to startups in priority areas. In particular, we suggest initiating a new policy of subsidizing interest on commercial bank loans. This is in tune with our drive for increasing efficiency and competitiveness in the fields deemed to be a priority. We will thereby support those entities generating added value and, most importantly, we will provide new and sustainable jobs.”
Based on the above, the Prime Minister gave the ministers of Economic Development and Investment, Finance and Agriculture two weeks to discuss and submit to the Government Staff proposals on developing a specific toolkit for assistance (subsidy) in priority areas in cooperation with the Central Bank and commercial banks.
The Premier also gave instructions regarding the administrative reform, garbage collection and sanitation. He ordered to deal with the shortcomings in the operations of gas stations, water supply and irrigation systems. Concerning the latter, Karen Karapetyan evoked the need to address the problem of 560 settlements left out of the coverage of the water supply company.
The Government made an amendment to comply with requirements of a standing decision referred to as “On phased liberalization of coastwise freightage.” The decision will streamline the coastwise transportations exercised by the logistic companies registered in the Eurasian Economic Union-member States. In addition, the freight-haulers registered in Armenia will be able to carry out a single coastwise transportation after implementing an interstate transportation in EEU-member States.
In order to meet the statutory requirements of the law On Procurement, the meeting approved a new procedure for the procurement process by amending a previously adopted decision. The decision will streamline the relationship applicable to the procurements made outside Armenia, procurement planning, procurement item specifications, initial control of procurement, contract execution, management and financing. The concept of “related persons” will be clearly defined to deal with the restrictions of their involvement in procurement procedures, including the terms of invitation and the contract, purchase order, the instances of centralized procurement and the legal persons authorized to carry out centralized procurements.
In an effort to facilitate the process of providing new-generation cash registers on preferential terms, money will be allocated to the Office of Introduction of Cash Registers. Note that SMEs and businesses in rural areas shall be provided new generation cash registers on preferential terms, while economic entities in border villages will get the cash registers free of charge.
Asked about the exact number of cash registers necessary to cover the nationwide demand, SRC Chairman Vardan Harutyunyan said a total of 25 thousand cash registers are needed to this end, noting that the SRC will have them procured by this yearend.
The Executive amended a standing decision to liberalize the operation and maintenance of cash registers. The decision provides that the maintenance of cash registers will be ensured by those legal entities and individual entrepreneurs having signed relevant contracts with the Office of Introduction of Cash Registers.
The Government decided to accept the Sovaldi drug (Sofosbuvir tablets of 400 mg N28) as provided to the Republic of Armenia by the Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Affairs of the Republic of Georgia for use in the treatment of patients suffering from Hepatitis C disease.
Money will be allocated to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia with a view to extending humanitarian assistance to the Syrian conflict-affected population