Speaking to CivilNet on October 6, Minister of Economy Vahan Kerobyan, referring to the sharp increase in the number of citizens moved from Russia to Armenia, stated that their number in Armenia is 100 to 150 thousand.
“I don’t have exact numbers, but we are talking about 100,000 to 150,000 people,” Kerobyan said.
Fact Investigation Platform tried to find out how many citizens of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus arrived and settled in Armenia in the first 9 months of this year, and in general, what economic impact these relocations to Armenia make on our country.
Let us remind that since February 24, due to the military operations initiated by Russia in the territory of Ukraine, the flow of citizens of the Russian Federation, Ukraine and Belarus to Armenia has increased dramatically. And from September 21, after the Russian President signed the decision on partial mobilization, the second wave of inflow of Russians to Armenia began.
Migration Service data
According to the data provided by the Migration Service, in 2022 in the period between January and September, 786,684 Russian citizens entered Armenia and 744,508 left. The difference between entry and departure was 42,176, that is, so many Russian citizens still remain in our country.
In the same period, 17,138 citizens arrived in Armenia from Belarus and 16,780 left, the difference is 358.
21,311 citizens arrived to Armenia from Ukraine and 21,117 citizens left. In other words, 197 Ukrainian citizens remained in the country.
Accordingly, the total number of citizens of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus settled in Armenia from the beginning of the year to September is 42,731 people.
Nevertheless, even the inaccurate number stated by Minister Kerobyan, the difference of which is 50,000, is quite exaggerated.
3513 citizens of the Russian Federation registered individual enterprises, 865 natural or legal entities registered LLCs
During the interview, Kerobyan also addresses the number of individual entrepreneurs and LLCs registered with the involvement of Russian citizens in the State Register of Legal Entities of the Ministry of Justice.
“We know that several thousand individual entrepreneurs and companies have been established, I cannot say the exact number now, but we are talking about more than 2,000,” he said.
In response to FIP.am’s inquiry, the Ministry of Justice reported in the period from February to October, 2022, 10, 3513 individual entrepreneurs received state registration and 865 limited liability companies received state registration with the involvement of Russian citizens.
92 individual enterprises and 79 LLCs with the involvement of Belarusian citizens were registered in RA, 43 individual enterprises and 50 LLCs with the involvement of Ukrainian citizens. When asked in which sector of economic activity they were mostly registered, the Ministry of Justice did not provide data, while according to Minister Kerobyan, most of them are companies in the IT sector.
Record growth of remittances to RA
According to the Central Bank, as of the last day of September this year, compared to the last day of February, the number of accounts of non-resident clients in RA commercial banks increased by 68,664.
Remittances from Russia to Armenia also increased sharply. As per the statistical data published by the Central Bank, when an unprecedented number of sanctions were imposed upon Russia, in March, 2022, compared to February, 2022, the number of remittances to Armenia increased from 180 million dollars to around 253 million dollars. In the period from May to August, remittances reached record numbers: 412, 598, 568 and 473 million dollars, respectively.
Only 452 million dollars were transferred from Russia to Armenia in June, 442.5 million dollars in July, and 327.5 million dollars in August.
It should be noted that during the same period, the outflow rates were not small either. 231 million dollars were sent abroad from Armenia in June, 432 million dollars in July, and 181 million dollars in August.
Thus, we can state that the figures stated by Kerobyan, that 100 to 150,000 Russian citizens moved to Armenia, are incorrect, as according to official statistics, that number is 42,176. As for the economic activity resulting from inflow of Russians, it is quite notable, even only from the perspective of the growth of private remittances sent from Russia.