By Atom Markarian
The euro, the new single European currency to be launched in January, is likely to be quite popular in Armenia as the country becomes economically more connected to the European Union, the chairman of the Armenian Central Bank (ACB) said on Thursday.
According to Tigran Sarkisian, the ACB is making final preparations for the currency’s introduction, having already converted one fifth of its hard currency reserves into euros. The bank’s euro reserves are now worth approximately $60 million. But
“Our external assets have been quite diversified and take into account, among other things, the euro factor,” Sarkisian told RFE/RL.
He said the country’s commercial banks and other businesses are also gearing up for the new currency’s entry into circulation in all EU member states except Britain and Denmark. “This means that for many in Armenia the euro will become a preferred currency,” he said. “For people doing business with Europe it will be more beneficial to work with euros.”
EU countries accounted for over one third of Armenia’s external trade volume of $550 million in the first half of this year.