Government takes steps to improve procurement procedures

In order to regulate the problems identified in the procurement process, the Government amended one of its previous decisions. According to the rationale, the applicable regulations cannot sufficiently ensure the effectiveness of procurement processes and the attractiveness of participation in procedures, including small and start-up businesses. The participants in the procurement process are presented with formal conditions; as part of the implementation of the agreements, the participants have the opportunity to demonstrate inappropriate behavior, putting at risk the full implementation of programs. The proposed changes will contribute to improving the efficiency of processes and the level of attractiveness of procedures, without loading formal conditions at the stage of evaluation of applications, minimizing potential risks that may arise during the execution of contracts, as well as eliminating the possibility of customers making subjective decisions and evaluating commission.

According to the Government’s decision, Manukyan Brandy Factory LLC has been granted a VAT deferment facility for a period of three years under their ongoing investment program. Note that Manukyan Brandy Factory LLC was founded in 2013. The Company plans to create and launch a fully automated international standards-compliant factory for the production of brandy, wine and fruit vodka in the Balahovit village of Kotayk region of Armenia with a total investment of 2.8 billion drams. The production phase is expected to start in 2020. The amount to be deferred for the purchase of equipment will be 273.4 million drams. Over the next three years, the Company will create 37 new jobs with an average salary of 260 thousand drams.

The meeting approved the proposal to sign a 13,400,000 euro-worth loan agreement between the Republic of Armenia and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, referred to as Second Additional Financing for Lifeline Road Network Improvement Project. The goal of the project is to provide access to markets and services for rural communities by improving the network of lifeline roads (three projects have been selected with a total length of 450 km) and strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technologies in order to manage a road network of vital importance.

The Government authorized the Service for Protection of Historical Environment and Historical-Cultural Museum-Reserves under the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Armenia to spend 6,000.0 thousand drams with a view to hosting an electronic music festival at the site of Garni cultural-historical museum-reserve. Due to be held on May 6, 2019, the festival will be broadcast live by Cercle (French media organization). The event can be viewed by millions of people around the globe.

Nikol Pashinyan stressed the importance of holding similar events in our country: “The electronic music fans say this is a major event of global coverage, which will attract great attention to Armenia. It turns out that there is a big army of electronic music fans in our country. They are convinced that numerous foreign tourists will come to attend festival.”

The Cabinet approved a number of government-drafted legislative initiatives and proposals submitted by National Assembly factions and members. In particular, the amendment to the law On State Duty will allow local companies to use scrap metal as a raw material, ensuring competitive prices for their end-products. As an extra incentive for local producers, it envisages restrictions on scrap metal exports from Armenia, which will help develop the local capacities through the use of marketing tools.