Armenia will soon open embassies in Japan and the Netherlands, raising to more than 30 the number of its diplomatic missions abroad, President Serzh Sarkisian’s office announced on Thursday.
Sarkisian signed a corresponding decree earlier in the day. He has yet to name the Armenian ambassadors to be based in the two nations.
Armenia currently has 29 embassies around the world, including virtually all major Western capitals. Many of the diplomats heading them also serve as ambassadors to other states lacking permanent Armenian missions.
In one such example, Sarkisian assigned on Thursday his Athens-based envoy in Greece, Gagik Ghalachian, to also perform the duties of Armenia’s ambassador to Serbia.
The upcoming opening of the Armenian embassies in Tokyo and The Hague reflects a slow but steady expansion of Armenia’s diplomatic presence abroad since the early 1990s. Yerevan opened an embassy in Madrid, Spain earlier this year.
It is not clear whether the upcoming launch of the new missions will be fully financed by the Armenian government. The Armenian state budget for this years sets aside only 37 million drams ($102,000) for the purchase of new embassy buildings.
Many of the existing embassy premises were purchased and donated to Armenia by wealthy members of its worldwide Diaspora.