Armenian Official Says Car Insurance Process On Track

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–The ongoing introduction of insurance for all cars, trucks and other road vehicles in Armenia will be completed within a month, the head of a state agency coordinating the process said on Wednesday.

Auto insurance covering physical damage caused to other cars and individuals became mandatory in the country on January 1, in accordance with a government-drafted law passed by the Armenian parliament last year.

The process got off to a slow start in mid-October, with many car owners complaining about what they see as disproportionately high insurance fees set by the Armenian Central Bank for all local car insurers. Most motorists have to pay 25,000 drams ($70) or 32,000 drams each year.

According to Vahan Avetisian, the executive director of the Auto Insurance Bureau, only about 230,000 of 430,000 or so vehicles registered in Armenia were covered by insurance as of Tuesday. He said more than 20,000 car owners have applied for a temporary exemption from the requirement allowed by the law.

They will have to deposit their license plates with the road police and will be allowed to drive their cars for up to three months a year.

Avetisian was confident that the remaining uninsured motorists will purchase insurance policies in the coming weeks. “I think that we will have a full coverage by the beginning of February,” he told RFE/RL’s Armenian service.

Under the law, drivers caught not possessing such policies are to be fined 50,000 drams. Colonel Norik Sargsian, a senior traffic police official, said on Wednesday that the police have already started slapping the fines but declined to give any numbers. “We are obliged to enforce the law,” he told a news conference.

According to Avetisian, insurance firms have been formally notified of about 600 traffic accidents involving their clients since the beginning of the year. “About 20-25 percent of those involved in these accidents have already applied to insurance firms for compensation,” he said.

The traffic police normally register and investigate serious accidents killing or injuring people. Sargsian said there have been 61 such cases so far this month. They left five people dead and more than a hundred others injured, he added.


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  1. Avetis said:

    Instead of protesting something as important as car insurance, these brainless idiots should instead be thinking about quitting smoking and drinking. The typical Armenian male pays more for cigarettes and booze than for food, clothing, communal expanses, rent – or the proposed car insurance. It’s simple: grow the hell up, be a responsible adult, quit smoking and use the money to purchase automobile insurance. And if you are still that pathetically broke – don’t drive! Get over your car fetishes. A majority of earthlings do not own cars. No one is ENTITLED to own an automobile.

  2. Armen said:

    Douche! Come live in Armenia for a week and see if you can do all those things you are preaching here!

    It’s easy to speak from a warm and cozy place. Shut up and don’t tell others how to live their lives.