YEREVAN, (Arka) — The updated ‘Panama Papers’ database, available at offshoreleaks.icij.org, include 37 individuals and entities affiliated with Armenia. The document includes 32 addresses, as well as three companies that mention the word “Armenia” – ARMENIA GROUP S.A., ARMENIA DEVELOPMENT LTD, GPM ARMENIA LTD, two of which are registered in the British Virgin Islands. The place of registration of the third is unknown. At the same time, these three companies are indirectly linked to Luxembourg, Panama and the United Kingdom.
According to economist Vardan Bostanjian the inclusion of Armenias in the ‘Panama Papers” is an indication of lack of control and appropriate levers, which are inherent in an effective government
“This means that these persons managed to take significant financial means out of the country”, he said during a press conference, stressing that offshores has one goal – to hide the money.
“This means capital outflow from the country. This has a very negative effect on the economy,’ he said.
The updated list includes also 6,285 persons from Russia, 127 from Azerbaijan, 82 from Georgia and 148 from Iran.
One of the Armenians in the list is now the former Chief Enforcement Officer Mihran Poghosian, who according to the Armenian Hetq.am investigative website is a shareholder in three companies registered in Panama – Sigtem Real Estates Incorporated, Hopkinten Trading Incorporated and BANGIO INVEST S.A.
A former environment minister and the current head of Armenia’s Water Committee Aram Harutyunian are also mentioned in the list.
The “Panama Papers” database went live on Monday – the largest ever release of secret offshore companies and the people behind them. The data, collated by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), comes from the Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca and includes information about companies, trusts, foundations and funds incorporated in 21 tax havens, from Hong Kong to Nevada in the United States.
The names of thousands of offshore companies were published on Monday night as the Panama Papers were released in full. The ICIJ made information fully available on 200,000 companies, trusts and foundations set up in 21 jurisdictions