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U.S., Armenia Sign Framework Trade Deal

  • RFE/RL

U.S. Assistant Trade Representative Daniel Mullaney (left) and Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian sign a U.S.-Armenian Trade and Investment Framework Agreement in Washington on May 7. Armenian President (second right) was present for the signing.

U.S. Assistant Trade Representative Daniel Mullaney (left) and Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian sign a U.S.-Armenian Trade and Investment Framework Agreement in Washington on May 7. Armenian President (second right) was present for the signing.

WASHINGTON -- The United States and Armenia have signed a framework trade deal aimed at boosting bilateral investment and commercial ties.

Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian attended the May 7 signing of the agreement in Washington by his foreign minister, Eduard Nalbandian, and Dan Mullaney, the assistant U.S. trade representative for Europe and the Middle East.

U.S. officials have cited a flawed business environment in Armenia as a barrier to investment in the former Soviet republic, which is a member of the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union.

According to Armenian government data, bilateral trade with the United States totaled $221 million last year, less than 4 percent of Armenia’s foreign trade.

Sarkisian was later to attend a religious service in Washington to commemorate the centennial of mass killings of Armenians in Ottoman Turkey, which Armenia and other countries -- but not the United States -- describe as "genocide."

Turkey objects to the term.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden was also set to attend the service.

With reporting by RFE/RL’s Armenian Service
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