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Armenia’s GDP Rose
7.2 Percent in 1998
Source: Interfax, Moscow,
24 February 1999

Yerevan:  Armenia’s GDP in 1998 increased by 7.2 percent in real terms as compared with 1997, although industrial decline stood at 2.5 percent, the Armenian Statistics Ministry told Interfax.  In current prices, the GDP amounted to 951.9bn drams (or 1.885bn dollars in accordance with the average annual exchange rate of 1 dollar to 505 drams), and the volume of industrial output 260.14bn drams (515 .1m dollars).  The GDP’s deflator index increased by 11.2 percent compared with 1997.

Agricultural production grew by 13.1 percent last year and was worth 402.12bn drams (796.3m dollars).  Armeniaís foreign trade turnover amounted to 1.12bn dollars, which was 0.5 percent down from the 1997 figure.  Exports decreased by 3.9 percent to 223.4m dollars and imports grew by 0.4 per cent to 895.7m dollars.

Last year’s average monthly wage amounted to 17,170 drams (34 dollars), 31.8 percent greater than in 1997.  The populationís nominal incomes amounted to 581.25bn drams (1.15bn dollars), 17.3 percent up on the 1997 level.  Real incomes went up by 7.9 per cent.  The population’s spending in 1998 amounted to 578.88bn drams (1.15bn dollars) which was 15.6 percent more than in 1997. Consumer prices dropped by 1.3 per cent from 1st January to 31st December 1998.  The average annual level of consumer prices in 1998 was 8.7 percent greater than in 1997 and the level of prices on industrial goods 13.4 percent higher.

Karabakh President Leaves for US Visit
YEREVAN (RFE/RL)Arkady Ghoukassian, the president of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, flew on Thursday to the United States on an unofficial visit aimed at presenting Stepanakertís position on how to end the long conflict with Azerbaijan, officials said. Ghoukassian is due to meet with officials in the US State Department as well as congressmen and senators, according to his press service.

“The Karabakh president believes that the visit is first of all an opportunity to once again present Karabakh’s position on the conflictís resolution,” an official press release said. Meetings are also scheduled with representatives of the large Armenian-American community, the main organizer of the trip.

General Motors Said To Manufacture Cars In Armenia
General Motors, the world’s leading car manufacturer, has decided to launch production operations in Armenia after long feasibility studies, the government announced on Thursday.