The World Bank said on Thursday that it has not revised downwards its economic growth forecast for Armenia following this month’s flare-up of violence in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone.
Laura Bailey, the head of the bank’s office in Yerevan, said it continues to expect that the Armenian economy will grow by 2 percent this year.
According to official statistics, the Armenian economy grew by around 3 percent last year despite a drop in domestic consumption resulting from falling remittances from Armenian migrant workers in Russia.
Government data indicates that Gross Domestic Product increased more rapidly in the first quarter of this year on the back of strong performances of the manufacturing and non-trade services sectors. The National Statistical Service (NSS) also recorded a 26 percent surge in first-quarter Armenian exports.
The reported faster growth came was followed by the April 2 outbreak of worst fighting between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in Nagorno-Karabakh since 1994. Despite being largely stopped on April 5, the hostilities increased the risk of a full-blown Armenian-Azerbaijani war.
Bailey said that long periods of armed conflict usually undermine economic activity by scaring away foreign investors from countries affected by it. “We are not seeing any of those kinds of impact [on Armenia] yet,” she told a news conference.