Armenia, Iran intend to expand energy ties: Sanosyan

Mehr News Agency, Iran
Nov 28 2023

TEHRAN, Nov. 28 (MNA) – Armenia and Iran seek to increase their cooperation under the gas for electricity program, Armenian Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure Gnel Sanosyan said today.

As part of gas for electricity swap deal Armenia has been receiving natural gas from Iran since 2009, which is converted into electricity here and is shipped back to Iran- 3 kWh of electricity for one cubic meters of natural gas, local Armenian media ARKA news agency reported.

Armenia imports annually 365 million cubic meters of gas from Iran. In 2023 August Armenia and Iran signed a document to extend the Natural Gas for Electricity agreement until 2030.

Under the revised agreement Iran will increase exports of natural gas to Armenia while Armenia will increase exports of electricity to Iran, the Armenia media said.

Sanosyan noted today that the Iran-Armenia natural gas pipeline has the capacity to ship more gas from Iran and there is no need for a new pipeline as the existing one is not used to its full capacity.


PM Pashinyan: Armenia fully and unequivocally defends Georgia’s territorial integrity

European Interest
Nov 25 2023

On November 24, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan answered video questions of Armenian citizens. The Armenian Prime Minister stressed that Armenia fully and unequivocally supports the territorial integrity of Georgia. 

The public asked Pashinyan whether Armenia can recognise Abkhazia and South Ossetia as occupied territories.

“We fully and unequivocally defend the unity, sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence and democracy of Georgia,” the Prime Minister said.

Since August 2008, the Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia have been under Russian occupation. The Russian forces created two “independent republics” not recognised by the UN. 

Pashinyan underlined noticeable differences in Armenia’s UN voting preferences before and after 2019.

After its independence, Armenia aligned with Russia and joined the Russia-led military alliance, the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). The Kremlin also politically controlled the country.

However, after the 2018 Armenian Revolution, which consisted of pro-democracy, anti-government protests led by the actual PM Nikol Pasinyan, the relations between Armenia and Russia deteriorated. Since 2020, due to the developments in the Nagorno-Karabakh War and the 2023 Azerbaijani offensive in Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia has moved a significant distance from the Kremlin.

Prime Minister Pasinyan is trying to bring his country closer to the EU and Western democracies.

Armenia and Georgia are increasing their cooperation and exchange of diplomatic support internationally and bilaterally.

On 17 November 2023, Prime Minister Pashinyan received a delegation from Georgia led by the Minister of Defence, Juansher Burchuladze.

During the meeting, the Armenian PM noted that relations between Armenia and Georgia continue to develop dynamically, and the two countries cooperate in various fields. 

The Prime Minister emphasised that this is important for the Armenian government.

During the meeting, the two parts discussed issues related to cooperation and exchange of experience in security and defence, as well as regional peace and stability.

Armenia, Saudi Arabia establish diplomatic relations

MEHR News Agency
Nov 26 2023

TEHRAN, Nov. 26 (MNA) – Armenia and Saudi Arabia have established official diplomatic relations, the Armenian Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.

"The two countries established diplomatic relations guided by the intention to strengthen bilateral relations and expand the scope of cooperation as well as to support international security and peace," the Armenian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The protocol on the establishment of the ties was signed in Abu Dhabi by Armenian Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Karen Grigoryan and Saudi Ambassador to the UAE Sultan bin Abdullah Al-Angari, the statement added, TASS reported.

Saudi Arabia had not established diplomatic relations with Armenia for several decades due to Baku-Yerevan disputes over the Karabakh region.

Saudi Arabia's policy towards Armenia changed in October 2021 with the visit of the then President of Armenia, Armen Sargsyan, to Riyadh.


Azerbaijan: Parliamentarians confirm security of Armenian residents of Karabakh written

Nov 19 2023

 One of the polling stations our team, comprised of international editors and journalists, visited was located within a community of those people displaced after Armenia’s invasion of Karabakh. I was expecting to see something like a refugee camp, what I found however was something else altogether.

What we found was a settled and safe community with all the amenities one would expect of any town or city in Azerbaijan, or indeed, anywhere in western Europe.

I was able to talk with older members of the Azerbaijan community, including one gentleman, a former schoolteacher,  who was present when on February 26th 1992, Armenian forces in Khojaly murdered 613 civilians, including 106 women and 63 children. 

With tears in his eyes he asked me “what could I do to stop it? I was a teacher, I didn’t even have a rifle.”

Whilst younger members of the community, born in Azerbaijan, have fully integrated into the wider society, helped by preferential educational programmes, the older members were united in one aim: to return to their homes, their lives, all stolen during the illegal annexation by Armenian forces, backed by Russian troops and tanks.

In my heart I felt that they were unlikely to ever return home. But now they are returning.

A group of Azerbaijani parliamentarians recently visited Brussels, taking time to meet with journalists, to discuss how his country sees future relations with Armenia.

Tural Ganjaliyev, who chairs the EU-Azerbaijan Parliamentary Cooperation Committee, explained that despite the events of the past those Armenians who had settled in Karabakh were welcome to stay.

He explained that those who fled when Azerbaijani troops reclaimed the territory would be welcomed back, pre-empting a ruling by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the matter given on Friday (Nov. 16th).

He also pointed out that whilst Azerbaijan encouraged Armenians to stay, the Armenian military called on them to leave.

The ICJ has ordered Azerbaijan to submit a report within eight weeks on the progress on the return of Armenians.

The Azerbaijani government has launched a website for Armenians who had left Karabakh to register to return, Mr. Ganjaliyev explained, however Armenia has blocked access to it.

“We hope the Armenians will come back”, he told journalists. 

We also ask the Armenian authorities to establish a way for the 300,000 Azerbaijanis who were expelled in the 1980s to come back, it should be a two-way street. We will invite or allow UN missions, at least according to my view, to come frequently to visit this region to assess the facts on the ground”.

Vugar Bayramov – who sits on Azerbaijan’s Parliamentary Committee for Economic Policy, Industries and Enterprise – pointed out that an end to the frozen conflict that has destabilised the region for decades could have a massively positive impact not only on the economies of Azerbaijan and Armenia but also Georgia because the three countries of the South Caucasus could form a strong single market.

Azerbaijan, Georgia and potentially Armenia form part of the Middle Corridor trade route which links Asia and Europe via the Caspian Sea, the South Caucasus and Turkiye.

Mr Bayramov spoke of how an east-west transport route would benefit Armenia, both in terms of its own logistics and by helping to build a sustainable peace.

“If there is communication between Azerbaijan and Armenia, then of course, it will ensure a lasting and sustainable peace for the region” he said.

That will need time, he acknowledged, but the normalisation process could be fast. He envisaged a future where Azerbaijan invested in Armenia, much as it currently does in Georgia and Turkey.

Azerbaijan rejects Washington-mediated meeting with Armenia

 16:16, 16 November 2023

YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 16, ARMENPRESS. Azerbaijan has turned down a proposed foreign ministerial meeting with Armenia scheduled to take place on November 20 in Washington, D.C. after a State Department official said that ‘nothing will be normal with Azerbaijan after the events of September 19 until we see progress on the peace track.’

“We’ve made clear that nothing will be normal with Azerbaijan after the events of September 19 until we see progress on the peace track. So we’ve canceled a number of high-level visits, condemned the actions… We don’t anticipate submitting a waiver on Section 907 until such time that we see a real improvement,” James O’Brien, assistant secretary at the department’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, said at a hearing on Nagorno-Karabakh in the House of Representative Foreign Affairs Committee on November 15.

The Azerbaijani foreign ministry falsely accused the State Department official’s statement of being ‘biased, unproductive, groundless and unacceptable.”

The Azeri foreign ministry, in a statement, in response to O’Brien, said that Azerbaijan “considers the possibility of high-level visits from the United States to Azerbaijan inappropriate as well.”

The Azerbaijani foreign ministry also said that the “unilateral” approach of the U.S. could lead to it losing its role of a mediator. “In these conditions, we don’t find it possible to hold the meeting of the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia on November 20 in Washington,” the Azerbaijani foreign ministry said.

Prime Minister Pashinyan attends Yerevan premiere of STARMUS VI film


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 18, ARMENPRESS. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and his wife Anna Hakobyan attended Friday evening the premiere of a film dedicated to the STARMUS VI festival which was held in Yerevan in 2022.

The screening took place in Moscow Cinema in downtown Yerevan and was attended by other government officials and lawmakers, including Speaker of Parliament Alen Simonyan, Deputy Speaker of Parliament Hakob Arshakyan and Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister’s Office Arayik Harutyunyan.

The film is produced by STARMUS co-founders Garik Israelyan and Brian May, as well as filmmaker Todd Douglas Miller.

Israelyan also attended the premiere.

The film will be screened worldwide.

The Tax Landscape in Armenia: Balancing Taxes and Business Growth

Gillett News
Nov 11 2023

Armenia, known for its economic growth and investment opportunities, has often faced questions regarding its tax system. Many wonder whether the country imposes high taxes on its citizens and businesses. By delving into the tax landscape of Armenia, we can gain a deeper understanding and explore some commonly asked questions.

Understanding Armenia’s Tax System

Armenia operates under a progressive tax system, wherein individuals and businesses are taxed based on their income and profits, respectively. The country imposes a flat income tax rate of 23%, which applies universally, irrespective of income levels.

FAQ: Answering Common Queries

1. Are there any additional taxes in Armenia?

Indeed, apart from income tax, individuals may also have to pay social security contributions, which are deducted from their salaries. Social security contribution rates currently stand at 5%.

2. How does Armenia’s tax system compare to other countries?

When compared to neighboring countries like Georgia and Azerbaijan, Armenia’s tax rates can be considered moderate. However, countries in Western Europe generally have higher tax rates.

3. Are there any tax incentives or exemptions in Armenia?

Certainly, Armenia offers various tax incentives and exemptions aimed at attracting foreign investments and fostering economic growth. These incentives encompass reduced tax rates for specified industries, exemptions for certain types of income, and tax holidays for newly established businesses.

4. How does the tax system impact businesses in Armenia?

Although the tax system in Armenia may appear burdensome, it is crucial to consider the broader business environment and the tax incentives offered by the country. In recent years, the Armenian government has actively pursued reforms to simplify tax procedures and reduce bureaucratic hurdles, making it more business-friendly.

In this light, it is evident that while Armenia maintains a progressive tax system with a flat income tax rate of 23%, assessing the broader tax incentives and improvements made to the business environment is vital. Despite the tax rates, Armenia has shown dedication to cultivating a favorable landscape for businesses and attracting foreign investments.

Source: [](

Asbarez: Armenian American Museum Hosts Los Angeles Philharmonic Reception

Attendees of the Los Angeles Philharmonic reception. From left: Executive Vice Chairman Zaven Kazazian, Major Gifts Director Mary Khayat, Board of Governors Member Margaret Mgrublian, Board of Trustees Co-Treasurer Talin Yacoubian, Board of Trustees Member Dr. Nazareth Darakjian, Executive Chairman Berdj Karapetian, Executive Director Shant Sahakian

The Armenian American Museum and Cultural Center of California hosted a special reception at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in collaboration with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and its presentation of “Dudamel Leads Khachaturian” featuring Composer Aram Khachaturian’s internationally acclaimed and timeless musical compositions.

“It has been a wonderful evening of arts, culture, and community on a grand stage,” stated Board of Governors Member Margaret Mgrublian during her welcoming remarks. “The event serves as a reminder of how iconic venues such as the Walt Disney Concert Hall and soon-to-be Armenian American Museum play an important role in the work of cultural preservation and celebration.”

The Los Angeles Philharmonic is an internationally renowned orchestra that harnesses the transformative power of live music to build community, foster intellectual and artistic growth, and nurture the creative spirit. During the moving performance, Director Gustavo Dudamel led an exploration of Aram Khachaturian’s distinct voice first with a suite from his ballet “Spartacus” featuring the stirring Adagio followed by the intense and heroic Piano Concerto with the help of Jean-Yves Thibaudet.

The Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles

The museum hosted a special reception at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Founders Room following the musical performance. Attendees included Naming Opportunities, Benefactors, and Legacy Council donors of the museum. The event was sponsored by longtime supporters of the museum.

“We are excited to share that the Armenian American Museum will be rising to the horizon early next year with the installation of the museum’s structural steel,” announced Executive Chairman Berdj Karapetian to a roaring applause. “We are grateful to our generous donors for supporting the community’s vision for a landmark center that will be our gift to future generations.”

The Armenian American Museum is a world-class educational and cultural center that is currently under construction in the museum campus at Glendale Central Park. The first phase of construction featuring the museum parking garage and building foundation has been completed. The second phase of construction features the two-level 50,820 square foot museum superstructure. The museum will offer a wide range of public programming through the Permanent Exhibition, Temporary Exhibitions, Auditorium, Learning Center, Demonstration Kitchen, Archives Center, and more.

Learn more about the museum project by visiting the website.

Central Bank of Armenia: exchange rates and prices of precious metals – 07-11-23

 17:03, 7 November 2023

YEREVAN, 7 NOVEMBER, ARMENPRESS. The Central Bank of Armenia informs “Armenpress” that today, 7 November, USD exchange rate up by 0.32 drams to 402.66 drams. EUR exchange rate down by 2.40 drams to 430.04 drams. Russian Ruble exchange rate stood at 4.36 drams. GBP exchange rate down by 4.48 drams to 495.11 drams.

The Central Bank has set the following prices for precious metals.

Gold price down by 107.00 drams to 25692.27 drams. Silver price up by 7.61 drams to 300.47 drams.

Former Nagorno-Karabakh officials meet to discuss ‘preserving statehood’

Nov 2 2023
 2 November 2023

A group of former officials from Nagorno-Karabakh as well as president Samvel Shahramanyan have gathered in Yerevan to discuss ‘preserving the statehood’ of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Wednesday’s meeting was closed to the public and few details of the discussions have been revealed.

In addition to Shahramanyan, it included MPs from the region’s parliament as well as other public and political figures from Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia.

The discussion was initiated by the Committee for the Preservation of Artsakh Statehood, founded by Suren Petrosyan, an Armenian opposition figure.

Petrosyan previously announced that the committee’s priorities were to preserve Nagorno-Karabakh’s institutions while promoting recognition of the right to self-determination for Nagorno-Karabakh’s Armenian population and ensuring their safe return to their homeland. 

Practically the entire population of Nagorno-Karabakh fled to Armenia following the Azerbaijani attack on the region on 19 September and the region’s surrender the following day.

As part of the surrender agreement mediated by Russia, Shahramanyan signed a decree ordering the dissolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic by 1 January 2024.

One of the attendees of Wednesday’s meeting, Ara Zohrabyan, a right-wing Armenian opposition figure, said the decree had no legal force and that the president could not dissolve a state that ‘became independent by referendum’.

Zohrabyan did not disclose the content of the discussion but expressed hope that ‘Artsakh will be returned’ without clarifying by whom and how.

Shahramanyan did not answer journalists’ questions, while Suren Petrosyan, who initiated the meeting, announced that the processes would continue. 

‘The state has two components — land and people. At the moment, Artsakh is occupied, but our compatriots of Artsakh are here. The community exists, and there is also their legitimately elected government. And if we want to preserve our ambitions and our rights towards Artsakh, we must be able to preserve this second component,’ said Petrosyan.

However, concern has been raised in some quarters that a government in exile based in Armenia could put the country at risk from attack by Azerbaijan.

Petrosyan dismissed such concerns, stating the process was ‘not organised by the authorities’.

In late October, Shahramanyan also, claimed that ‘a republic created by the people cannot be dissolved by any document’. 

In response, Tigran Grigoryan, the head of the Regional Center for Democracy and Security, a Yerevan-based think tank, told CivilNet such initiatives could pose a threat to Armenia.

‘In the long term, I think this will be quite dangerous for the Armenian authorities because there will be pressure from Azerbaijan to dissolve all those bodies’, he said. ‘The Armenian authorities, if a peace agreement is signed, will not allow it to continue to exist in Armenia, at least at the level that all that exists now’, he added.

Grigoryan, who is himself from Stepanakert, also said it was unrealistic to hope that revoking any document or intervention by the international community could bring any fundamental change on the ground in Nagorno-Karabakh.

He also said that as there was no official initiative from Yerevan to create a government for Nagorno-Karabakh in exile, any group claiming to represent the region’s former Armeian population would likely face competition from other such groups and would thus not be taken seriously.