Local small businesses shut down under pressure

www.hraparak.am reports that there is a growing trend of closing small and medium enterprises in Armenia.

The news agency has talked to people, who had gathered at the State Registration Office at Komitas avenue, Yerevan, for the purpose of closing their businesses through filing applications. Businesses owners that were there to dissolve their enterprises said that the main reason was unauthorized visits of tax officials, which was pressure that they were not able to resist.

“In the recent times tax officials have started to visit us often, and as taxes are so high that we are unable to pay, we have to close our businesses and find people who can rent our space for a different type of business. These policies primarily affect small and medium enterprises as the large ones are connected with the government and can protect their businesses. Large businesses do not care about SME. The government imposes a penalty of one million drams only on a large business for selling outdated food, but instead of that they charge 175,000 drams from a small shop that fails to give a receipt,” said Karen Hambaryan, who was there to dissolve his business. He believes these unequal conditions make small businesses very vulnerable.

An employee of the State Registration Agency of legal entities said that people visit their office mostly for closing down their businesses. “If we compare with the past years, this year there are more people who say they cannot do business in this country. People that come here mostly say that there is pressure on small and medium businesses,” said the representative of the State Registration Agency. The latter also said that in the recent period more diasporans had applied to them for the purpose of registering new businesses.

According to this agency, during one month before the interview 59 businesses had closed down and stopped their operation, which is a huge number for Armenia.

By Anna Matevosyan

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