Prime Minister Karen Karapetian refused to be drawn on his political future when he visited Gyumri on Friday.
“I have answered this question on many occasions. Let me not repeat myself,” he told reporters after meeting with government officials and entrepreneurs in Armenia’s second largest city behind the closed doors.
Karapetian indicated early this year that he would like to continue serving as prime minister after the end of President Serzh Sarkisian’s final term in April 2018 if his cabinet succeeds in improving the socioeconomic situation in the country.
The 54-year-old former business executive claimed to have accomplished “many things” during his almost yearlong tenure. He said he and other government members will soon present detailed reports on their activities.
Karapetian said his latest trip to Gyumri is part of a second round of nationwide visits and “much more substantive” meetings with provincial and local government officials. “We have taken stock of problems and mapped out our tasks, and each agency knows what it has to do,” he said. “And such meetings will be regular.”
“I think that you will feel the change,” he added.
Earlier this year, Karapetian initiated a $10 million reconstruction of Gyumri’s historic old town which his government says will attract many tourists and stimulate economic activity in the impoverished city. One of its two main streets is due to be refurbished by the end of this month.
“We have no other places with so much potential for tourism,” said Karapetian. “Gyumri is simply unique and we will consistently carry on with this project.”
The premier promised in February that his family will invest $500,000 of its own money in the project.