By Atom Markarian
The World Bank and the Armenian government signed Friday a $5 million loan agreement which is meant to boost Armenia’s rapidly growing information technology sector.
The Armenian ministry of trade and industry will use the bank’s long-term loan to create a technological “incubator” that will provide local IT firms with office space, computer facilities, training and relevant information. The incubator will also help established companies and start-ups find export markets and foreign partners.
“We have very good human capital in Armenia. This project will help them upgrade and continuously modernize their skills,” the head of the World Bank’s Yerevan office, Owaise Saadat, told reporters after signing the agreement with Trade and Industry Minister Karen Chshmaritian.
IT is one of the promising and dynamic sectors of the Armenian economy. Several dozen companies mainly involved in computer software development are known to operate in the country. The most successful of them are subsidiaries of US and European software giants.
Chshmaritian said the IT sector’s aggregate output has doubled this year to reach about $100 million and there is room for its further expansion.