It became known on September 8 that former Mayor of Yerevan Karen Karapetyan is nominated for the position of Armenia’s Prime Minister. This issue of Key section tells about Karen Karapetyan.
1. What do we know about Karen Karapetyan?
Karen Karapetyan was born on the 14th of August in 1963, Stepanakert. He went to Leo Tolstoy school in 1970-1980, Yerevan. In 1985, he graduated with diploma of honor from Faculty of Applied Mathematics of Yerevan State University.
In 1989, he received PhD in Economics, and became Doctor of Economics in 2010.
В 1985-1996, he worked at the Computer Center of Armenia’s State Planning Committee and Armenian Association of Science and Culture, and gave lectures at Yerevan State University.
Between 1996 and 2001, he worked as Deputy Director and CEO at Armenergo. In 2001, he was appointed Deputy Minister of Energy of Armenia.
In 2001-2010, he worked as Chairman of the Board and CEO at ArmRosGazprom CJSC.
In 2009, he was given membership in Yerevan Council of Elders by the list of the Republican Party of Armenia. On December 17, 2010 he was elected as Yerevan Mayor and held that position until October 28, 2011.
In December 2011, Karen Karapetyan was appointed First Vice-President of Russian Gazprombank, and in November 2012 he became Deputy General Manager for strategy and development at Gazprom Mezhregiongaz LLC – Gazprom’s subsidiary. Since 2015, he worked as Deputy General Manager for international projects of Gazprom Energoholding LLC.
Karen Karapetyan is married, with three children.
2. What is Karen Karapetyan remembered for as Yerevan Mayor?
In October 2011, Mediamax published a detailed article on this subject, which is available here (in Armenian).
3. Why did Karen Karapetyan resign from the position of Yerevan Mayor?
In fact, this question remains unanswered. Several versions spread around, and Karen Karapetyan himself posted the following statement on his Facebook page on October 28, 2011:
“I have made the decision on resignation with great difficulty, and I state with full responsibility that it was not caused by political reasons, as many would think. I state that this decision is conditioned only by personal reasons”.
Mayor added during his interview to ArmNews TV that “there is no point in burdening the public with details of those reasons”.
However, many people still thought that Karen Karapetyan was forced to resign. In any case, he said on September 28, 2011, just a month prior to his resignation:
“We are definitely on the right way, we have things to be proud of, and I am sure that we can anticipate a fantastic future that is in our hands. No one but us will build our country and improve our city.”
4. Why do people say “drive” when they talk about Karen Karapetyan?
On April 12, 2011, while delivering a speech at the press conference dedicated to his 100 days as Mayor, Karen Karapetyan said he didn’t consider himself a politician.
“It’s very interesting here. As they say, I get a drive,” Mayor said. After that the word “drive” became associated with Karen Karapetyan and was used by both his supporters and opponents.
5. What should we expect from Karen Karapetyan?
Karen Karapetyan is known for his liberal economic views. In March 2011 he said in the interview to Echo of Moscow radio station: “The spheres that contain business logic should be given to private investors.”
“Of course, there is a certain feudalistic tendency – the more industries, spheres and companies you control or manage, the stronger you become. That is absolutely not true,” Yerevan Mayor said then.
“I am convinced that a strong manager or a team shouldn’t prove themselves artificially just to “play their muscles,” Karen Karapetyan noted.
“Corruption risks decrease in business management. We should create a system where people earn money legally. Any fight against corruption requires the solution of the main issue. If you don’t solve it, corruption stays. If you don’t give a chance to earn legally, people search for other ways,” Karen Karapetyan said in 2011.