Lemmon Is Optimistic About The Lincy Foundation Programs

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–The difficulties of the Lincy Foundation in implementing its large-scale projects in Armenia will hopefully be overcome soon–US Ambassador to Armenia Michael Lemmon said.

Lemmon said that one of the difficulties the Lincy Foundation had was to acquire a tax-exempt status in the US for some of its projects–so that its contributions would not be taxed as they are spent for humanitarian development purposes.

"When I was back in Washington in May I worked with my colleagues in the State Department on a letter to the Revenue Service–which I signed stating our support for the Lincy Program. I am personally committed to assisting the Lincy Foundation in all of its endeavors in trying to smoothen out the path," the Ambassador said.

Last year–Kirk Kerkorian–the Armenian-American billionaire–announced his intention to present some $200 million through the Lincy Foundation for different development programs in Armenia. In particular–the package involves funding construction in the 1988 earthquake zone and reconstruction of highways in Armenia. Another part of the package provides for medium term loans for industry development. This part has already started to operate with 1.3 million dollars supplied for the first four bids.

According to the Ambassador–the delay is largely due to the complicated bureaucratic system–which becomes involved in settling such issues.

"I think we are on the way of getting all of this work through," Lemmon said.

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