Sargsyan Calls for Restoring Confidence

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–"The government has closely examined all proposals made by the parliament deputies concerning the 2000 budget but the country is not yet able to secure social-economic progress–especially after the October 27 killings that resulted in a 16 billion Drams loss in budget revenues," said Armenian prime minister Aram Sargsyan speaking before the parliament Tuesday.

"To successfully execute the budget we have to change the political atmosphere–restore the people’s confidence in the future–and improve conditions for running businesses," said Sargsyan.

"I had been engaged in the industrial sector–and I am well aware of those proposals which will foster industrial development," said the prime minister adding that priority must be given to securing economic growth through operation of industrial enterprises.

The prime minister said that five specially chosen enterprises will be aided in operation and production. The enterprises that will get the government’s protection will be chosen from a list to be presented by March 10 by the state property management ministry.

He also said that the earmarked $58 million expected from privatization this year will be allocated to industry development.

Sargsyan stressed it is necessary to eliminate all factors impeding business development–to reduce the number of agencies entitled to check the enterprises’ financial activities–to strengthen financial order and clarify the tax system to secure budget revenues in 2000.

Completing his speech–the prime minister called for closer parliament-government cooperation.

"It is my priority to create an atmosphere of cooperation–mutual trust and solidarity. If we succeed in combining our efforts–we can solve all problems facing us," concluded the prime minister.

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