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“Zhoghovurd” is encouraged by President Serzh Sarkisian’s statements made in Moscow on Wednesday after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. “First of all, Sarkisian made clear that the Armenian side’s position [on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict] has not changed at least in the last two years,” writes the paper. It says that Sarkisian thus indicated that Yerevan will not accept any pro-Azerbaijani amendments to international mediators’ peace proposals which may have been made by Moscow.

The paper says Sarkisian also noted that Russia briefs Armenia on its dealings with Turkey, Azerbaijan and Iran. Many in Armenia, he said, “closely monitored” Putin’s meetings with his Azerbaijani, Iranian and Turkish counterparts held earlier this week.

Lragir.am dismisses Putin’s claim that Armenia has already benefited economically from its membership in the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). It notes that Putin overstated the rate of Armenia’s economic growth recorded in 2015. The online publication also criticizes Sarkisian for praising Russia’s role in international efforts to end the Karabakh conflict.

“Sources close to the State Revenue Committee (SRC) claim that the shortfall in tax revenue collected by it may reach 6 percent -- 70 billion drams ($147 million) -- this year,” writes “Haykakan Zhamanak.” “The government’s sole hope is that a number of large and medium-sized mining projects will be launched before the end of the year and taxes collected from them will partly make up for the shortfall.” The paper is surprised by this deficit, saying that the SRC collected more taxes in the second quarter of this year than in the same period in 2015. “But the real state of the economy makes SRC officials pessimistic about indicators expected in the second half of the year,” it says.

(Tigran Avetisian)

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