US and EU pledges USD 358 million to Armenia

RUSSIA / FSU POLITICS - In Brief 06 Apr 2024 by Alex Teddy

On April 5 the President of the European Commission and the US Secretary of State met the Prime Minister of Armenia in Brussels. The EU will grant Armenia USD 293 million. The EU says it is giving the money to enhance Armenia's economy so it can withstand shocks.  The US said it wants to safeguard Armenian democracy and ensure peace. The US is granting USD 65 million. The money is for energy and trade diversification. It is also to help the country develop its digital infrastructure and improve food security.  The total of aid from the EU and the US is a considerable sum for a country with an economy of USD 27 billion per annum. Presently Armenia is overly reliant on trade with Russia. As a barren and mountainous country it produces little food and can trade only via Georgia and Iran. The EU and the US are keen to draw Armenia away from Russia and Iran. France is very sympathetic to Armenia.  Tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan rose in March 2024. The US has interceded with Azerbaijan to try to achieve a detente. There are EU monitors in Armenia along the ceasefire line. On March 31 Azerbaijan accused Armenian troops of massing on the border. The EU said this is false.

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