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Official News

Friday, 5 October 2007




RA Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan received Head of the Armenia Office of the World Bank Aristomene Varudakis. There have been discussed a broad range of issues regarding the current status of World Bank-implemented programs in Armenia, the outlook for the World Bank-RA Government cooperation, as well as questions related to RA Prime Minister's upcoming visit to Washington in the second decade of this October. The Prime Minister of Armenia is scheduled to attend the Annul Meeting of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and participate in the planned session of the Armenian-American intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation in Washington.




The Prime Minister mentioned that the Armenian Government was highly appreciative of the ongoing cooperation with the World Bank and was going to maintain and build on this cooperation during the second stage of World Bank's Country Assistance Strategy.




Serzh Sargsyan and Aristomene Varudakis have referred to the details of "World Bank and Armenia: partnership for a better future" document which outlines the path covered by bilateral partnership, the mission of the Bank, its program package, the results had so far, the programs in process of preparation, those areas likely to be covered by the Bank's new 2008-2012 country assistance strategy, the eventual challenges and priorities, as well as other issues of topical interest.




The Head of the Armenia Office of the World Bank mentioned that the programs realized in Armenia by the Bank had a sufficiently high performance record which was an important criterion for the International Development Association, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, as well as for other donors and financial institutions to join the World Bank in its undertakings in Armenia. "This high performance record should be maintained during the implementation of the World Bank's new country assistance strategy with the latter due to be kept under control through sustained monitoring, as it has been the case to date,"- Mr. Aristomene Varudakis said.




The parties have further reviewed the eventual directions of the World Bank-Government of Armenia cooperation for the next 4 years. It is expected that the priority areas of the World Bank's assistance in the period under review will cover the betterment of the investment and economic competition environments in order to keep up the pace of economic growth and make it more diversified, as well as the development of the knowledge-based economy, the maintenance of the current rates of growth in welfare spending and the achievement of enhanced accessibility and quality for social services.




Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan emphasized the importance of regional economic development programs which comprised both economic and political components. In economic terms, this might promote the development of railway and motorway communications and would be beneficial to all sides involved therein. The Head of the Armenia Office of the World Bank said that additional efforts were susceptible to be exerted in this direction and that the possibility of implementing projects like this ought to be considered in all detail during the discussion of those programs planned for the next few years, and this might be another area of cooperation.




Answering the Prime Minister's question on a recent article published in "Observer" British periodical treating the program of water supply improvement in Yerevan, Mr. Varudakis said that, as early as in 2004, the World Bank's Armenia Office presented the results of its own assessment to the newly established temporary commission, according to which no grounds of default had been revealed, moreover, the program was reported to be satisfactory. Nevertheless, as he said, the matter is currently followed upon by the Bank's institutional impartiality department as an independent entity, and the Bank will inform the public as soon as it has the opinion of said department.

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