The NA Standing Committee on Economic Affairs isn't preparing to develop social mechanisms for mitigating inflation before the possible gas price inflation. In addition, chairman of the committee, Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) deputy Vardan Ayvazyan told "A1+" that the committee would discuss the issue, if there happens to be gas inflation.
We present "A1+"'s interview with Chairman of the NA Standing Committee on Economic Affairs Vardan Ayvazyan.
"A1+": Mr. Ayvazyan, what kind of laws does your committee develop to restrict the inflation in Armenia to a certain extent, especially when Armenia expects to see gas inflation?
Vardan Ayvazyan: Armenia has a market economy. We're try8ing to prevent monopoly and misuse of the dominant position. The rest is shaped by supply and demand.
"A1+": But you're not trying to fight against the phenomena because monopolists still have their positions.
V. A.: That's your opinion.
"A1+": The government has made serious pledges in its plan, but today it is already clear that inflation in Armenia is on the rise and that the prices of products are rising more and more every day.
V. A.: There is no inflation. There might be inflation expressed by the dollar-dram relationship. For instance, the price of sugar has gone up by 125 drams over the past three years and the dollar-dram has increased by 25 percent. This means that 125 drams is 12.5 percent, and the dollar rate has increased by 25 percent. Now, is this inflation or not?
"A1+": You mean that the price of sugar hasn't gone up too much. Should it have gone up a lot?
V. A.: I can't say because that should definitely be in the frames of supply and demand.
"A1+": Mr. Ayvazyan, if gas prices go up, what will Armenian consumers do? Isn't the National Assembly developing any mechanism for social protection?
V. A.: In the case of inflation, the only thing we can do is to provide the socially vulnerable groups with compensation. What do you suggest we do? What are the grounds for gas inflation? I don't understand. Do you have information about the gas inflation?
"A1+": There have already been different statements, Mr. Ayvazyan. This means that the National Assembly doesn't care and isn't doing anything. Does this mean that things will be up to the people again?
V. A.: That's your opinion. What are you doing about it?
"A1+": We raise issues of national concern, Mr. Ayvazyan.
V. A.: What does that mean?
Interview by Marine Kharatyan