A recently published economic report in Armenia indicates that over half the country's population is in need of government assistance, and that many others rely on cash transfers from relatives working abroad. In addition, the statistics point to a widening of the gap between rich and poor in Armenia, a trend that complicates government efforts to promote economic recovery.
The report, titled "The Social Pattern and Poverty in the Republic of Armenia," was published by the National Statistical Commission. According to the survey, which was sponsored by the World Bank, about 55 percent of the individual population can be categorized as "poor" or "impoverished" (very poor). The share of households falling into these two categories is somewhat lower than 50 percent, indicating that those Armenians in large families are more apt to be poor or impoverished.
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Haroutiun Khachatrian is a Yerevan-based writer specializing in economic and political affairs.