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Government Expects Tax Revenue Shortfall


Armenia - Newly appointed Finance Minister Gagik Khachatrian is introduced to his staff, Yerevan, 28Apr2014.

Armenia - Newly appointed Finance Minister Gagik Khachatrian is introduced to his staff, Yerevan, 28Apr2014.

The Armenian government’s tax revenue will fall short of its target set in the state budget for this year, First Deputy Finance Minister Pavel Safarian said on Friday.

“Tax revenue will be below the projected figure,” Safarian told reporters. He declined to speculate on the scale of the anticipated shortfall.

Armenia’s 2015 budget commits the government to collecting 1.14 trillion drams ($2.4 billion) in various taxes and duties. In Safarian’s words, tax authorities will fail to meet this target in full primarily because of slower-than-expected economic growth in the country.

Dismissing pessimistic macroeconomic forecasts, Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamian insisted in August that the Armenian economy will expand by 4 percent this year despite knock-on effects of a recession in Russia. Abrahamian’s deputy, Vache Gabrielian, predicted a more modest growth rate late last month, however.

The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund likewise expect slower growth in Armenia, citing the fallout from Russia’s economic troubles.

The government has so far given no indications that it will cut budgetary spending this year due to the tax revenue shortfall. Its draft budget for next year sets a slightly lower revenue target.

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