Պետությունը պետք է հաշվի նստի մեր այսօրվա քննարկման հետ ու հասկանա, որ չի կարող զիջման գնալ այն հարցում, որը հարյուր հազարավոր հայեր պահանջում են ճանաչել։
The state should value the birth of every child. It is not about one-time payments. One of the priorities of the state's policy should be to promote the birth of children, regardless of whether the family is well-off or not.
Հայաստանում ցանկացած ոլորտում պետք է ներգրավված լինեն Սփյուռքի տարբեր համայնքներում ապրող փորձագետներ։
In my opinion the best way to unite the diaspora and particularly the younger diaspora is to connect them physically through amazing events and experiences and with purpose. This logically makes sense before trying to unite through purpose alone. Through travel events throughout the world disparate members of our culture come together for fun, unity, and entertainment, and at a cost lower than a regular vacation while supporting Armenian business and causes. It is gaining momentum with millennials and gen z and I would like to share progress and combine efforts if it supports your goal #5, to: Transform the relationship between Armenia and the Diaspora into one based on mutualism and trust.
Rob B., USA
It is necessary to invent Armenian-language games so that children living in the Diaspora do not forget our language and learn Armenian so that they can play.
We must have an ideology, and we must create a mutually beneficial channel between Armenia and the Diaspora so that one can benefit from the other.
I think that the Diaspora should play an active role in the internal life of Armenia, but our statesmen are not friendly and make even starting a business here a big headache.
First of all, I salute this great work of analysis and reflection that you have carried out.
Here are my brief remarks:
Tourism. Indeed, the near absence of direct flights and at "comfortable" times is a real brake. Moreover, there is a lack of translated Armenian literature and tourist guides about Armenia in European bookstores. There is an obvious lack of general knowledge about Armenia (culture/art, architecture, music, cuisine...) and its history. It is necessary to publish books for potential tourists who are looking for original and authentic destinations.
Tourism that includes the discovery of Armenia's rich biogeography should be developed (in addition to ecotourism and cultural and religious tourism).
Agriculture: some serious questions to be asked. I will be very cautious with the proposal of intensification in the agricultural field (fertilizers, chemistry/phytosanitary and especially, the seed!). This orientation presents strong environmental and human health risks, as the European experience has shown. Armenia is not an agricultural country that can "feed the world", but it has undeniable assets because Armenia represents a "Hot-spot" of biodiversity and endemism. Thus, more than productivity, it is the promotion (and conservation!) of endemic and local species that should be put forward. Moreover, it would be necessary to think about "seed banks of crops and "wild" plant species" to be developed or to enrich the existing world collections. I see Armenia as a country where organic agricultural production would be largely dominant: these are modern "trends" that can bring a real added value to our agricultural or natural products without such a significant harm to the environment and health of intensive and technological agriculture. The world is in full restructuring and abandonment of intensive agricultural production: we must join this movement and preserve our small country.
" The use of advanced seeds and agricultural technology” - concretely, what are we referring to (not the "Monsanto" type approach, I hope)?
Focus on production of essential products (grains, fodder, pork) to achieve self-sufficiency and food security. Expansion of exports to target countries (Russia, Ukraine, UAE, Saudi Arabia), including fruits, tobacco and wine products.
Why focus on pig farming? One of the most problematic breeding from an ecological point of view! - Only "traditional" extensive breeding, in semi-freedom (like in Corsica or Spain: food by the big oak trees, etc.) could be suitable, in my opinion. Ex. sheep and goats in mountain pastures, etc.
We could promote/export cheeses, dairy products (matsoun type, etc.) in Russia and elsewhere; our canning factories (vegetables, fruits) are famous...
Eventually, "local" spirits.
Reclamation of fallow lands to expand land use by encouraging consolidation to increase production
Attention should be paid to soil depletion (a big problem in the world) and in Europe at present, while Armenia does not have large cultivable areas (except for the Ararat valley).
It is necessary to think about the establishment of the units of treatment - valorization of manure / dung / organic waste in general. Currently, there are organic fertilizers production units (humic and fulvic acids, etc.) which are not very energy consuming and should be installed near the farms/sources of raw materials.
Use of high technologies in agriculture: yes (e.g. use of satellite data for crop management), but taking into account the climatic, geological and edaphic specificities of Armenia - a whole applied science to develop!
In a general way, I noticed serious problems of waste disposal and garbage cans in Armenia (no sorting nor recycling/valorization of waste)...
The energy question is not addressed in the summary, although it is a key question for all the economic and social branches and a sine qua non condition for the independence of the country. What about "renewable" resources (solar, geothermal, hydro...)?
About the management of water resources - France seems to me to be a good example with its watershed approach, applying the "polluter-pays" principle, the mutualization of fees to safeguard the environment... Water is declared a non-alienable national asset.
Education / Teaching: languages - in addition to English, Russian could make a comeback so that Russian specialists can contribute their knowledge. Today, only the generation of the 60-70s still speaks Russian + the diaspora in Russia.
I am not sure that the public education in the USA (except for the big schools and universities) is an example to be taken! Serious problems are well known in the schools (kindergarten, primary, secondary, high school) in the USA. Good examples are Finland and Korea.
Health: Armenia can develop a network of health care centers (in particularly suitable places: mountains, thermal waters, as in Switzerland) or personal services for foreign retirees (especially of Armenian origin).
Industry/ technology: Transition from low-cost outsourcing to specialized value-added services to increase productivity and protect the economy from the growth of multinational corporations
Yes and yes again! Armenia was once known by the production of high value-added goods. It would be necessary to find the fields where specialization and high qualification of workers can be an asset and compete with China and India (electronics, IT...). Moreover, this field will allow the development of partnerships with foreign countries. Quality and originality (at the cutting edge of technology) are the key words for Armenia (like Japan).
I hope that my questions and my personal feeling can help to better formulate the directions to be developed in Armenia.
Maia A., France
I am a Diaspora Armenian born and raised in California, the daughter of genocide survivors, a physician and biotech expert who has volunteered in Armenia for multiple years in health-related areas.My comments come from the perspective of someone who has tried to be helpful, but who encountered multiple barriers.My suggestions below are cross-cutting and address multiple goals.1)Create a Diaspora-Armenia Innovation and Business Park/Centera.Such an entity would not only attract many more diaspora Armenians to open businesses in Armenia, but it would also create jobs and potentially an economic boom for the country. Jobs would be needed to support all the activities noted below, to support the new businesses and to support the increased number of people engaged in business activities (down-stream impact on restaurants, stores, services etc)b.This would be both a physical brick and mortar office park and a virtual office park whose mission is to make it easy to start a business and that overcomes well-known barriers (corruption, complicated laws and regulations, socio-cultural issues, and so forth). Locations would be in Yerevan and ideally one in each Marz.c.Provide business support services and education to diaspora Armenians, essentially create a business start-up tool-kitd.Provide human resources services to help with hiring and employee management.e.Provide practical educational services such as language classes (Eastern Armenian, Western Armenian, Russian, English, French), legal requirements and responsibilities in Armenia, how to set up vendor and contractor contracts in Armenia, socio-political topics, market research topics and so forth. Essentially anything that a diaspora businessperson would need to know to successfully open and manage a business in Armenia.f.Access to trustworthy, honest, high quality business support service providers that are fully vetted (e.g. attorneys, accountants, IT experts) g.Training programs for Armenia citizens to give them the skills needed by the new businesses (this could be a separate entity that contracts with the Innovation and Business Park/Centerh.Access to a variety of physical office spaces that can be rented or purchased.i.Access to executive apartments (long term and short-term rentals) that meet western standards of quality.j.Provide security solutions to businesses to prevent damage and theft (physical and digital).k.Liaison to government authorities to ensure government is able to address diaspora business people’s needs (e.g. 2)Develop in-country Armenia expertise in Eurasia Economic Union capabilitiesa.Given that as of this month all pharmaceutical and biotech approvals must now go through the EAEU and which gives any product approved in one country full reciprocity/approval in all EAEU countries, there is an opportunity for Armenia to be a preferred country in which companies conduct business to gain product registration.
b.Create businesses that provide pharma and biotech companies with the services needed to complete their product registration applications and to maintain their approvals/registrations. Become a one stop shop for these companies. Services would include legal and regulatory affairs experts, writers, translators (all documents must be in Russian), IT support and so forth.c.This could create many well-paying jobs for Armenians.d.This could establish Armenia as the “go to” country for businesses wishing to expand to EAEU countries. Given that Armenia is the most internationally facing of the EAEU countries, this is a logical role for Armenia. e.This will make Armenia indispensable to the EAEU success by attracting more businesses to the EAEU.f.Once this is accomplished for pharma/biotech, the same concept can be applied to other areas.3)Create a Diaspora-Armenia Healthcare Education and Capabilities Institutea.Improvement in the quality of healthcare in Armenia is critical to attracting people to emigrate and to attracting international businesses to open offices in Armenia. No one wants to be in a country for extended periods of time unless there is high quality medical care.b.There is a glut of doctors in Armenia but very few are well trained. On the other hand,there is shortage of nurses and cultural disparagement of the nursing profession (because they compete with doctors). c.The Institute could work to fix this long-term problem and shift the healthcare culture to one of high quality, high standards, accountability and collaboration across specialties and professions.d.This would include mentoring programs with top medical experts throughout the world, exchange programs, continuingmedical education programs and so forth.e.This would include working with the Republic of Armenia government to update regulations and laws to support a system that can provide high quality medical care and that can rout out corruption.f.This would include working closely with existing educational institutions in Armenia (YSMU, AUA, etc).g.Become an avenue for Armenia healthcare professionals to gain access to technical training, information, tech support.h.To become a think tank to problem-solve Armenia’s many healthcare challenges.4)Create a Diaspora-Armenia International Affairs Institutea.Similar in concept to #3 above (Healthcare) except for International and Foreign Affairsb.This would haveavery strong strategic component that included techniques for anticipating response options for different scenarios and game-out thesescenarios.c.Couldbe an avenue for collaboration with other international affairs think tanks of global acclaim.d.A means by which to set a higher standard and higher bar for Armenian foreign affairs which will becritical to survival of theRepublic of Armenia.e.A conduit to creating relationships with other countries that will enablethose countries to be motivated to support a strong and independent and flourishing Armenia.5)Develop a Diaspora-Armenia Philanthropy Societya.Create an NGO that supports NGOs.b.One thing that was clear during the 44-day War was that the ability of the government to provide humanitarian services or even to request humanitarian assistance or to know
which humanitarian organization were available to help completely collapsed in part because there was a lack of management of NGOs. This cannot happen again.c.There is also no strategic or operational coordination of NGOs.d.Armenia and NGOs working to help the people of Armenia would benefit from establishment of such a society.e.The Republic of Armenia would need to “bless” such an endeavor and agree to work and cooperate with this endeavor.f.Similar in concept to #1 above (diaspora business park/center); in fact,some functions could be shared between #1 and #5 (e.g. educational and training services)g.NGOs play a critical role in Armenia and should be part of any emergency response strategy.