Armenpress News Agency, Armenia May 20, 2017 Saturday Increase of transactions with Armenian bank-issued cards abroad linked with development of outbound tourism – economist YEREVAN, MAY 16, ARMENPRESS. Economists say the increase of overall transactions in foreign countries with credit cards issued by Armenian banks is associates with development of outbound tourism, while increase of non-cash transactions is associated with formation of the culture of making payments with cards. According to official statistics, 208,642 transactions with Armenian bank-issued cards were made abroad in March, 2017, while in February the number was 177,365 and in March of 2016 – 173,742. The volume of these transactions in March, 2017 amounted 6 billion 823 million drams – an increase of more than 1 billion drams in a month. Economist Aram Kayfajyan told ARMENPRESS the increase is associated with development of outbound tourism. “Tourists or businessmen are the ones using Armenian banking cards abroad, I don’t think large expenditures are made with them. If people buy some property or begin activities abroad, usually cards aren’t used”, he said, adding that taking into consideration the activation of Armenia’s economy, outbound tourism has also been activated, which can be the reason of volume and quantity increase of transactions made by Armenian banking cards abroad. In March, the volume of cash withdrawals amounted 1 billion 444 million drams, while the quantity amounted to 14,162. Withdrawals increased by 179 million drams compared to February. In March, 194,480 non-cash transactions with Armenian banking cards were made abroad, with a volume of 5 billion 380 million drams, compared to the previous year the quantity increased by more than 39 thousand. More card transactions were made than withdrawals. Economist Tatul Manaseryan, director of the ‘Alternative’ research center, says the decrease of cash operations is associated with the formation of a culture of making non-cash payments among Armenian citizens.