YEREVAN, December 16. / ARKA /. Khachatur Kokobelyan, an Armenian parliament member from Free Democrats party, said today Armenia's imminent accession to the Customs Union will push inflation up because of higher tariffs, applied by the Customs Union.
Armenia applies the so-called ad valorem customs duty ranging from 0 to 10 percent for imports of goods. For comparison, the customs duties used by the Customs Union on agricultural goods is 11.2%, for industrial goods -8.5 percent while the average rate of customs duties used by Armenia do not exceed 2 9 %.
According to Kokobelyan, it is clear that joining the Customs Union will push Armenia’s inflation up by at least 1.5%.
Another negative consequence of Armenia’s membership in the Russia-led trade bloc, according to Kokobelyan is an imminent decline in foreign investment.
He said although authorities try to defend their decision to join the Customs Union it is obvious that as a member of the Russia-led alliance Armenia will become less attractive to foreign investors.
In an earlier interview with ARKA Russia’s deputy economic development minister Alexei Likhachev said the Customs Union intends to reduce tariffs to 5.5% in the next two years to comply with Russia’s commitments to World Trade Organization. -0-