Armenian authorities economically dependent on EU – political engineerBadalyan noted that despite the political constraints imposed by Russia, the economic dependence on the EU remains largely essential in the current circumstances.
The Armenian authorities have no other choice but to abide by their commitments to the EU on which they are economically dependent, political engineer Armen Badalyan said in an interview with Tert.am, commenting on the EU ambassador’s recent statement in Yerevan.
“The principle underlying the EU-Armenia relations is the following: the EU provides money which the Armenian authorities use to procure election monitoring equipment and ensure a peaceful conduct of elections. But the EU representative in Armenia has realized that the they are not to be cheated by those peaceful processes. He then embarked on the second and very important step [to call] for revising the Central Electoral Commission’s structure as the key mechanism promoting the authorities' reproduction. This is why the authorities immediately voiced their strong criticism. What [EU Ambassador Piotr] Switalski is doing is just an attempt to disrupt that entire process of reproduction,” he said, adding that the EU will be no longer satisfied with providing money.
Badalyan noted that despite the political constraints imposed by Russia, the economic dependence on the EU remains largely essential in the current circumstances.
“Apart from grants, many Armenian government representatives hold their property in Western countries’ banks or own property there. Armenia will now try to enter into a political bargaining with the EU, yet it still remains to be seen to what extent the EU leadership will allow that. Secondly, Armenia now has no other choice but to meet the EU demands as it has different other reasons,” he said, citing Armenia’s foreign debt and the Western loans as the key economic components.
Asked whether the “non-obedience” highlighted by the EU time and again may hamper the plans for signing the new EU-Armenia cooperation agreement (at the Eastern Partnership summit in November), the expert ruled out that possibility.
“If the European Union did not want to sign [the agreement], it would simply declare [its intention]. Armenia does not have such a great political or economic weight to make the EU avoid statements. As for the Armenian authorities, they may really not sign it at all. Though the agreement has been coordinated with Moscow and there is absolutely no problem about that. The most important component in this agreement is the economic one, which Russia has excluded. All the rest – dealing with democracy-building etc. – is political, so the Armenian authorities may well sign it without any difficulty,” he added.