The bonds of friendship and shared values between Americans and Armenians span more than a century. Americans of Armenian heritage have served the US in every war since the Civil War, and proudly serve today in every branch of the military. Since regaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the Republic of Armenia has been a strong friend of America, sending troops to support US operations in Iraq, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mali, and Afghanistan. In addition, Armenia is regularly ranked highly by the Wall Street Journal / Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom.
At the same time, the people of landlocked Armenia, the world’s first Christian state, continue to face the devastating impact of Turkey and Azerbaijan’s dual economic blockades.
ANCA Ask: The Administration should actively promote the growth of US-Armenia economic relations by negotiating a US-Armenia Double Tax Treaty, hosting trade missions, and by other means, consistent with calls by Microsoft, FedEx, NASDAQ, and other firms doing business in Armenia.
- US-Armenia Economic Relations: Since regaining its independence in 1991, the US and Armenia have enacted a range of bilateral economic treaties and agreements including: Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), Bilateral Investment Treaty (1992), Agreement on Trade Relations (1992), Investment Incentive Agreement (1992), World Trade Organization Membership (2003), Permanent Normal Trade Relations Status (2004), Joint Economic Task Force (1999), and Trade and Investment Framework Agreement – TIFA (2015).
- US Aid to Armenia: Since the Armenian earthquake in December 1988, the US has sent over $2 billion in US assistance to landlocked Armenia to help address the devastating impact of Turkey and Azerbaijan’s illegal blockades. US assistance has played a vital role in helping alleviate these blockades (among the longest in modern history) and promoting Armenia’s free market system and democratic development.
- US-Armenia Military Cooperation: Armenia, a crucial ally in a strategic region of the world, has extended robust support for US-led peacekeeping deployments in Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Mali and Kosovo, and is cooperating with the US on a broad range of regional and security challenges. In June 2011, as countries were pulling out of Afghanistan, Armenia actually tripled its troop deployment there. Armenia had four times as many troops in Afghanistan per capita than Turkey and ten times more per capita than either Canada or France. Armenia signed a bilateral affairs agreement with the US Department of Defense and the State of Kansas in 2003, establishing the Kansas-Armenia State Partnership Program. In 2014, Kansas and Armenia expanded the effort by enacting the Humanitarian Civic Assistance Program, which has helped renovate the Darbas School, Darbas Clinic, Ashtarak hospital, Yerevan Elderly Institute #1, and the Yerevan Emergency Operations Center.