Political and Economic Issues Have Forced International Airlines to Leave the Armenian Market
09.07.2015
12:00
International air companies have stopped their flights to and from Armenia because of political and economic challenges.

Among the airlines that have recently announced about their leaving the Armenian aviation market are Czech Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines and Etihad Airways.

Former head of the Government-affiliated Department of Civil Aviation Shahen Petrosyan says Armenia has ceded the entire aviation market to Russia.

“The open skies policy – in force for two years already - is a bluff. Our airspace has almost always been open to all airlines. After Armavia’s bankruptcy Air Armenia, a newly-founded air company, got the national carrier status. It was decided to liberalize the airspace without considering the interests of the local carrier. Air Armenia, however, went bankrupt instantly as it could not stand the price dumping policies of the Russian companies,” Petrosyan says.

The transit to the open skies policies takes long time and it is a normal market process, Petrosyan believes.

“If suddenly we get under sanctions like Russia we won’t be able to fly anymore because we have no aviation of our own,” says Petrosyan.

Political analyst Armen Grigoryan says the issue remains a political one.

“Improvement is possible given the relevant taxes are decreased. Armenia has the highest taxes as compared with the Eastern European countries,” Grigoryan says.

The USAID survey conducted in 2011, Grigoryan says, fixed that while the fees collected by the airport from passengers are on the average level, the taxes set for passengers by Armenia’s Government are among the highest ones in the world.

“Zvartnots International Airport charges 28 490 Euros for a two-hour parking of a plane while in Riga it costs 15 960 Euros. If the Government is really eager to improve, liberalize the industry, they might abolish the tax of 10 thousand drams,” Grigoryan says.

Some citizens of Armenia, therefore, prefer using Georgian airports when leaving abroad. Meanwhile, Georgia, which declared the open skies policy in 2005, has doubled the number of air passengers since.

“The entry of low-cost airlines brought great changes to Georgia and the number of European tourists to this country has increased today,” Grigoryan says.

The establishment of national airlines is a matter of political will, Grigoryan and Petrosyan believe.

“Back in 90s we had a war, blockade but we somehow managed to found three airlines which all operated. Now we are living in better conditions and it is not difficult to found a new company. It is the political will that we lack,” Petrosyan says.

Lilit Arakelyan, Editor-Coordinator

Please contact the author at lilitarakelyan@pjc.am.

 

Videos
Print Friendly and PDF
More Press Releases
“Students Against Army Respite: Demands and Proposals”
08.11.2017
11:00
A discussion entitled “Students Against Army Respite: Requirements and Proposals” was held at Media Center on November 8 attended by Aren Manukyan, Member of the initiative “For the sake of development of science 2004” and Misha Tadevosyan, Member of Education Civic Initiative, Education Expert.
“Vision of RA Security and Defense of Yelq Alliance: Pre-Election Program and Practical Steps”
02.11.2017
13:00
Parties of the National Assembly of the sixth convocation have separate provisions and recommendations regarding the country's security issues in their electoral programs.
“Cultural Figures Propose to Install “Bread Bringer” Arthur Sargsyan's Memorial”
02.11.2017
11:00
Media Center, November2, Yerevan. Cultural Figures Propose to Install “Bread Bringer” Arthur Sargsyan's memorial in Yerevan and presented their proposals at Media Center on November 2.
“Draft Law on Military Service and the Status of Servants: Won’t the Reforms in the Army Hinder Science?”
26.10.2017
19:30
The Media Center held a debate, entitled “Draft Law on Military Service and the Status of Servants: Won’t the Reforms in the Army Hinder Science?” in “A1+” TV Pavilion with online broadcasting on October 26.
“Education Funding Issues in the State Budget 2018”
25.10.2017
11:00
October 25, 11:00: A press conference of Educational Civic Initiative entitled “Education Funding Issues in the State Budget 2018” was held at Media Center (Address: 12, Saryan str., 3rd floor).
Follow us on social networks
Registration of events
Services
Videos
Press Releases
Armenia-Turkey Events