The RA Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan’s headed governmental delegation left for Prague on 1-3 June with carpets, expensive canvases, silver cups and other souvenirs.
For this visit 2 Holy Bibles with silver covers, gilded and decorated with semi-precious stones, each worth 227.500 AMD (the total price of the contract was 455.000 AMD). The souvenirs were bought from the individual entrepreneur Manya Babayan.
Also expensive cognacs were bought from “Agulis Mek” Company: 6 bottles of 0.7 liters “Nairi”, each worth 35.000 AMD, 6 bottles of 0.7 liters “Dvin” each worth 40.000 AMD, 1 bottle of 0.7 liters “Kilikia” worth 167.000 AMD, and 5 bottles of 0.5 liters “Akhtamar” each worth 9.625 AMD. Altogether approximately 800.000 AMD worth cognac was bought from this company.
And from “Artexim” Company drinks worth 702.000AMD were bought: the above mentioned cognacs and also 0.7 liters wines “Karas” and “Zorah” 6 bottles of each.
All in all souvenirs worth 6 mln AMD were bought for the governmental visit to Czech Republic.
On 28-29 May the delegation headed by the Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan paid a governmental visit to Kazakhstan. In this case the souvenirs were more modest. Expensive drinks worth 2 mln AMD were bought from “Artexim” and “Agulis Mek” Companies.
To Iravaban.net’s question on what juridical basis these souvenirs were bought and whom they were presented, the Minister Chief of Staff of the RA Government Davit Harutyunyan answered: “During RA Prime Minister’s official foreign visits the exchange of souvenirs is a constituent part of international practices of official ceremonial events”. He also mentioned that the expenses connected with the souvenirs are carried out on the account of official budget foreseen for foreign official business trips.
Maybe, Davit Harutyunyan points to the international practice, as long as RA legislation does not have any regulations connected with the ceremony of buying souvenirs, their prices and exchange.
It must be mentioned that Iravaban.net has previously referred to the costs of the air tickets of these two visits. The governmental delegation has had special flights to Kazakhstan and Czech Republic, paying 76.000 USD equivalents in Armenian Currency to “Air Training Centre” for those flights.