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Marine Martirosyan

Armenian Parliament Passes Bill Modifying Circulation Law: Small Business Owners Get Temporary Respite

By a vote of 75 to 1, Armenia’s parliament today passed a bill modifying the Circulation Tax law now on the books that has been opposed by many small business owners and has led to a number of recent street protests in Yerevan.

The change will postpone the deadline requiring certain businesses to maintain paperwork on goods purchased, until July 1 of this year.

The forty MPs who abstained from voting either pro or con were from the Prosperous Armenia, Armenian National Congress, Heritage, and Rule of Law parliamentary factions.

Prosperous Armenia faction secretary Naira Zohrabyan said that she abstained because an extension was no solution to the issue. She added that the opposition would introduce a bill on the tax law in the near future.

Heritage faction head Rouben Hakobyan affirmed that the opposition would introduce a unified bill within the next two weeks based on verbal agreements reached with the prime minister.

ARF faction head Armen Rustamyan, whose party voted in favor of today’s bill along with the Republican Party, told reporters that they approved the bill based on concerns that an even worse version would be introduced.