YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — The Armenian government has spent a total of about 150 billion drams (over $300 million) since March on relief and stimulus packages for businesses and individual citizens affected by the coronavirus pandemic, according to an official.
Economy Minister Tigran Khachatryan said at a press conference on Friday, August 14, that of this sum 93 billion drams (over $190 million) have been allocated through banks in the forms of loans.
“We decided to focus on specific issues of each sphere and to direct funds of support for targeted solutions to emerging or existing and expected issues,” the minister said.
Earlier this week the government approved two more coronavirus aid packages targeting sectors most affected by the pandemic. Under these programs assistance will be given to the spheres of tourism and agriculture.
Khachatryan said that the government’s support for the tourism sector, which is facing problems all over the world due to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as related areas, including the hotel business and public catering, will be aimed at preserving jobs.
“We are dealing with a situation where companies see their turnover reduced by more than half. On the other hand, in this situation they want to save jobs and keep workers who are part of their workforce,” the minister said.