Association Chairman Defends Armenia’s Membership In Customs Union


YEREVAN, September 12. / ARKA /. Chairman of the Union of Armenian
Domestic Commodity Producers Vazgen Safarian defended today president
Sargsyan’s decision to make Armenia a member of the Russian-led Customs
Union saying it is going to have a positive impact on the economy.

“Membership in the Customs Union will become a direct stimulus for
the development of the Armenian economy. In the recent past we and
Russia shared a common economic area, industrial and economic culture,
our factories worked by using similar technology,” Safarian said
on Thursday.

Safarian brushed aside as groundless fears that by joining the Customs
Union Armenia will lose its political independence.

“No country in the world – from the U.S. to Mozambique- is absolutely
independent. All countries are in a certain economic, political and
military-strategic dependence on each other,” he said.

Safarian said Armenia may offer to its future partners in the union
brandies, agricultural, industrial products and textile goods.

Safarian added that a membership in the Customs Union does not mean
Armenia will have to cut its ties with Europe. “Those who are engaged
in trade with the EU countries should continue it, because Europe
needs the goods we export, especially ore and raw materials,” he said.

According to the National Statistical Service of Armenia, Armenian
exports to EU in January-December 2012 amounted to $560.3 million and
that to Russia , Kazakhstan and Belarus, which make the Customs Union-
to about $293 million

In January -June 2013 this year Armenian exports to EU dropped
by 3 percent year-on-year to $250. 5 million, while exports
to the Customs Union member countries grew to $149.4 million
from $125 in the first half of last year. -0- – See more at: