17.May .2022 13:30

Armenian central bank expects trade with Russia to decline in 2022

Armenian central bank expects trade with Russia to decline in 2022
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Armenia’s trade with Russia, its largest foreign trade partner, is likely to decrease in 2022, Hovhannes Khachatryan, Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank of Armenia, said on Monday, when speaking at a meeting of the National Assembly's committee finance issues.

Armenia's trade with Russia in 2021 totaled $2.5 bln, including $800 mln worth Armenian exports to the Russian Federation and 1.7 billion worth imports from that country.

"There is little fresh data for the past 1.5 months, which is not enough for making far-reaching forecasts, but in all likelihood, the bilateral trade will decline this year. We haven't yet published a final estimate on the balance of payments and commodities and capital flows, so we haven't yet established where the changes will occur," the Central Bank Deputy Chairman said.

Khachatryan said that Armenia's trade with Ukraine used to be small at $160mln, including $120 million worth imports from that country, but now the trade is close to zero.

"We have negative forecasts for the Russian economy expecting its GDP to decline by 8% in 2022, but I want to note that this forecast was made under uncertain developments," he said.

According to official statistical data, Armenia's foreign trade turnover with CIS countries in the first quarter of this year totaled about $690.7 million, an increase of 39.9% over the same period last year.

The largest foreign trade partners were Russia with about $634.2 million worth bilateral trade, an increase of 40.6% against the first quarter of 2021, Ukraine with $24.6 million, a decrease of 5.4% and Belarus with about $16.4 million, an increase of 73.2%.

Overall, in the first quarter of 2022 Armenia's foreign trade grew by 38.5% from the same time span of 2021 to over $2 billion. Armenian exports in the 1st quarter of 2022 rose by 26.9% to about $731.8 million, while imports into Armenia in January-March 2022 totaled about $1.4 ,billion, an increase of 45.6% compared to January-March 2021, ARKA reports.