“Haykakan Zhamanak” dismisses Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamian’s assurances that the Armenian economy will continue to growth this year against all odds. The paper claims that the National Statistical Service (NSS) may have started rigging Armenia’s macroeconomic indicators in order to allow Abrahamian to avoid a serious embarrassment. In particular, it questions an NSS claim that Armenian industrial output in April was up by 10 percent year on year.
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” believes that Abrahamian did not mean the Armenian opposition when he said on Thursday that “some forces” want his government to fail. The paper says he almost certainly referred to his rivals within the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK) or even the government itself. “Abrahamian sees elements of sabotage within the regime and is openly talking about that,” it says.
“Zhoghovurd” recalls in this regard that Abrahamian’s predecessor, Tigran Sarkisian, similarly assured the public in late 2008, at the outset of a global financial crisis, that Armenia is not at risk of a recession. The Armenian economy contracted by over 14 percent in 2009.
“Hayots Ashkhar” wonders whether this week’s shooting attack on Suren Khachatrian’s car was stage-managed by the controversial governor of the Syunik province. The paper says that this might have been done to distract the public from a May 2 brutal violent attack on two men in Goris, which was widely blamed on Khachatrian’s son Tigran. “Another hypothesis is that what happened is an excuse [for Khachatrian] to be able to get rid of his enemies,” it says.