The new Draft Tax Code has been at the core of criticism among public, political and professional circles but was adopted by the first reading at the National Assembly. In fact, it is the constitution of the business world and it needs significant corrections and conceptual changes.
Although there are some positive developments in recent years in solving the problems of people held in prisons, systemic problems remain in penitentiaries. They are overcrowded penitentiaries, the low quality of medical service provided to people in prison, their jail conditions, as well as non-statutory relations in penitentiaries. Such is the conclusion of the observation group, conducting public monitoring in penitentiary institutions and bodies of the Ministry of Justice.
Although a year has passed from the rebels of the citizens against the electricity price increase on Baghramyan Avenue and the cases of violence against the journalists covering the events called “electricyerevan" by law enforcement officials, “there is no progress in the investigation of cases”.
St. Petersburg meeting for resolving the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, the current process of Armenian-French economic and trade cooperation and the possibility of adoption of the bill criminalizing Armenian Genocide denial by the French Parliament. These are the main issues that the French Ambassador M. Jean-François Charpentier referred during the press conference at Media Center on June 21.
The joint anti-aircraft warfare systems in Caucasus between Armenia and Russia should be considered not in the context of April war or the Russian policy in the region but just an agreement made between two states on defense system. Chairman of RA NA Standing Committee on Foreign Relations Artak Zakaryan said this during the discussion on “Armenia and Russia Unite the Anti-Aircraft Warfare Systems: Risks or Opportunities?” at Media Center on June 16.
The war in April on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone showed that although the authorities were expecting a war, but they were not ready and they were unaware of the attack. Elites also did not realize that as a result of the worsening of the situation, there could be dangerous position and territorial losses at the forefront which could become a threat for their occupied positions in the public consciousness.
The struggle between “Local Developers” company belonging to businessman Samvel Mayrapetyan and the residents of Teryan 23, Pushkin 4, 10 and Lalayants 37 buildings about the property right continues. The residents are sure that the construction company and its owner conduct the acquisition procedure of real estate “with violations of law, on which the Municipality and the courts turn a blind eye." The residents intend to go to court and start a new judicial procedure. They also do not trust the data provided by “Anikom” LTD that carried out the estimation of their apartments by Samvel Mayrapetyan’s request and are sure that their property was underestimated on purpose.
Although the gas price was reduced by 9.5 AMD per cubic meter by the Public Services Regulatory Commission (PSRC), but there was an opportunity to reduce it more than twice. Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee for consideration on Economic Affairs Mikayel Melkumyan and the President of the Union of Domestic Manufacturers Vazgen Safaryan said this during the discussion on “What impact will have the reduction of gas and electricity prices on the economy?” at Media Center on June 3.
The field of aviation needs clarification of legislative regulations, state sponsorship and stricter control over the national airlines to avoid dumping things on the market, as well as ensuring equal conditions for all the airlines. Representatives of Air Transport Policy Sub-Committee of the Public Council drew attention to these problems during the press conference on "Problems of Aviation Sector in Armenia: is having a national airline an imperative?” at Media Center on June 2.
“There are around 89 wine and brandy companies engaged in the production, only 9 of them store grapes but all of them are producing brandy. It is not clear from what they produce the brandy if grape is the only raw material and they do not store,” Artak Sargsyan, President of the Union of Armenian Viticulturists, said this during the discussion on “Viticulturists Demand Grape Purchase Money. Grape Store Companies and State Response” at Media Center and emphasized there is need for control in the field.
Although the leaders of Armenia do not stop talking about ensuring transparency in public procurement, the cost efficiency is still concerning. In order to increase public control over public procurement sector, Transparency International Anti-Corruption Center (TIAC) created a system of public procurement, which will operate in online regime.
A group of lawyers and journalists initiated a procedure of prosecuting Azerbaijan in the international courts related to the April armed clashes in the zone of NK conflict. At this moment they are conducting a fact-finding activity in order to apply to corresponding international institutions after collecting sufficient facts and evidences about the crimes committed by Azerbaijan. The institutions are the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) and the International Criminal Court.
Although the cancer mortality index of Armenia is one of the highest in the world, the state and public attention is limping about the treatment of this illness. There is lack of enough investments and infrastructures in the field and the awareness level of the society is rather low.
“After April four-day war it became more important to value the alive heroes. During the discussions we understood that monuments are usually devoted to victims in Armenia, there are no initiatives devoted to alive heroes. That is why we concentrated on alive heroes and want to thank them in this way,” Environmentalist Karine Panosyan said about this during the discussion on “Park of Alive Heroes” Project at Media Center.
The agreements made during the meeting of Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan Serj Sargsyan and Ilham Aliyev in Vienna do not mean that the procedure of Nagorno Karabakh (NK) conflict is on a qualitatively new stage. This only shows the “revival” of the negotiation process. The Armenian and Azerbaijani experts spoke about this during the discussion at Media Center on May 17.