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Questions about the Armenian economy

There is some impressive growth in the Armenian economy, The Armenian Economist (of course!) says:

[…]Armenia’s economy has grown at double digit rates over the past five years. Construction activity accounted for much of the recent growth in the economy (see recent post). Changes in the underlying trend in construction activity and its composition over the past decade, however, may foretell further growth and expansion in the economy.[…]

However, there are questions the blogger says, and no one seems to be answering them, like: “Do we know of any studies on how labor markets are impacted by this? Also, has anyone explored the effects on future growth?” (The Armenian Economist)

iArarat has some answers about the Armenian economy – “Emigres are Armenia’s version of Oil”, the blogger hints by republishing extracts from this AFP article:

[…]One key to salvation has been a diaspora estimated at almost nine million people scattered across the United States, Russia, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Their donations and transfers to Armenia amounted to 1.2 billion dollars (900,000 euros) last year, an impressive chunk of the country’s 6.5-billion-dollar (five-billion-euro) GDP, economist Tigran Jrbashyansaid. “Emigres are Armenia’s version of oil.”[…]

Kornelij Glas has drawn attention to the “pointless and aggressive” competition between the mobile phone operators in Armenia (VivaCell and Armentel) as a result of which the corporate tariffs of Armentel mobile have declined 8 times. “How far below are we going?” Kornelij asks with pessimism, although it’s hard to see from his post what is so bad about having cheaper mobile service.

If competition is bad, monopoly is decidedly worse, especially natural monopolies like water provision. Raffi K. from Life in Armenia is “Waterless”:

[…]A stark reminder of this pain in the ass of life in Armenia. I am waterless today. I hate that such a simple thing, something you’d never think about in the US, and something so essential, can remain a problem for so long. They been 24/hr promising water for a good 6 years now… and not even an improvement in hours so far as I can tell.[…]

How about setting up some competition in the sphere? Right! I guess I got a little bit carried away… :)

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