July 24, 2018 - 11:05 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The leaders of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues are collecting the signatures of their U.S. House colleagues on a bipartisan letter encouraging U.S. President Donald Trump to meet with Armenia's new Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan during the United Nations summit in New York this September, as part of a broader expansion of U.S.-Armenian dialogue aimed at further integrating Armenia into the international economic system and increasing U.S.-Armenia bilateral trade and investment.
"We are encouraged by all the new opportunities for more robust U.S. cooperation with Armenia's new government, and join with our Congressional friends in encouraging the Administration to pro-actively strengthen our bilateral ties - with a special focus on the sustainable growth of mutually-beneficial economic relations," said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian.
The ANCA's U.S.-Armenia economic policy priorities include 1) a $140 million MCC Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math grant for Armenia's public schools, 2) a modern Tax Treaty to eliminate double taxation and promote financial transparency, 3) a Social Security Agreement to protect benefits earned by people who divide their careers between the U.S. and Armenia, 4) non-stop commercial and cargo flights from Los Angeles to Yerevan, and 5) maximizing the effectiveness of the existing Trade and Investment Framework Agreement Council and the U.S.-Armenia Economic Task Force.
ANCA said it is also working with Armenian Caucus leadership and Congressional appropriators to expand FY2019 economic, military and refugee assistance to Armenia and demining, rehabilitation and peacekeeping assistance for Artsakh.
In a “Dear Colleague” letter to their Congressional colleagues, the Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Jackie Speier (D-CA), Dave Trott (R-MI), and David Valadao (R-CA) and Vice-Chairs Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) and Adam Schiff (D-CA), wrote, “since being elected into office by Parliament, Prime Minister Pashinyan has committed himself to advancing Armenian issues both domestically and internationally and has stated his intent to deepen ties with the United States. Without question, a conversation between President Trump and Prime Minister Pashinyan emphasizing economic development, security and democracy is critical for a strong pivot towards a strategic partnership between our countries.”
The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) said it is encouraging U.S. Representatives to co-sign this bipartisan Armenian Caucus appeal to the President.