YEREVAN, (AFP) - Armenia's economy in 2001 registered its strongest growth since the fall of the Soviet Union a decade ago, with gross domestic product (GDP) up 9.6 percent on the previous year, according to preliminary official figures.
"Last year's growth was made possible by the government's policy of financial stability, growth in the agricultural sector and a big increase in tourism linked to celebrations" of the 1,700th anniversary of Christianity in Armenia, said government spokeswoman Mary Harutiunian.
Tourism doubled in 2001 while agricultural production rose by 11.5 percent, she added, citing the state statistics department's figures.
Armenia's industrial output grew by 3.8 percent in 2001 -- or by 8.5 percent excluding energy -- against a rise of 6.4 percent the previous year.
Consumer prices went up by 2.9 percent last year, as opposed to a 0.4 percent inflation figure for 2000. Armenia, saw its GDP grow by six percent in 2000.