By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan is known for his controversial statements that put him and his country in a difficult situation. These mistakes are the result of his lack of knowledge and expertise of the region as well as his inexperience as a politician.
Recently, Pashinyan made yet another blunder by introducing false economic data about his country’s GDP.
In a Facebook post on January 6, Pashinyan boasted that Armenia overtook Georgia and Azerbaijan in terms of GDP in 2019.
“Dear people, remember, I said from the rostrum of the parliament that by the end of 2019 we will overtake Georgia in terms of GDP per capita, and in 2020, Azerbaijan. It turned out that at the end of 2019, we overtook both Georgia and Azerbaijan, becoming the leading country in the South Caucasus,” Pashinyan proclaimed, adding that this is the IMF’s official data.
Later Pashinyan had to edit his publication, explaining that he had shared the IMF forecast for 2020 instead of the data for 2019, according to which Armenia in terms of per capita GDP is still behind Azerbaijan.
This was not the first time Pashinyan was putting himself in an awkward position. In 2019, he was remembered for his statements in which he claimed that the Armenian Armed Forces would be among the top 20 armies, Armenian football players would become world or European champions by 2050.
Meanwhile, Armenian former Prime Minister Hrant Bagratyan believes that Armenia will be ahead of Georgia and Azerbaijan in terms of GDP per capita neither in 2019 or 2020.
"Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan wrote that in 2019 Armenia bypassed Georgia in terms of per capita GDP, and in 2020 it would bypass Azerbaijan, becoming an advanced country in the South Caucasus. And the link is given to the IMF homepage. Just say that there’s nothing like it," Bagratyan stated.
As he stressed, the official data on GDP is provided not by the IMF Fund, but by the World Bank. Meanwhile, the WB will publish data for 2019 in April-May 2020. “There is no question of statistics for 2020,” Bagratyan said.
He also added that in 2018 Armenia ($4,212) was behind Georgia ($4,717) and Azerbaijan ($4,721) by 12 percent in terms of GDP per capita. In 2017, Armenia ($3,914) lagged behind Azerbaijan ($4,147) by 5.9 percent and from Georgia ($4,357) by 11 percent.
"This is for the information of Nikol Pashinyan and his followers, who any growth in the past consider robbery," said the former prime minister of Armenia.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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