At the end of 2018, the Armenian government adopted a decision according to which the minimum amount of state benefits for those on welfare was raised to 25,500 AMD ($53 US) from the previous 16,000 AMD ($33 US). The decision came into force on January 1, 2019 and affected about 64,000 citizens, 5693 of whom are seniors not eligible for pensions. There are 322,692 senior citizens in Armenia, who do receive an average pension of 41,789 AMD ($87 US) according to the 2018 data of the National Statistical Committee (NSC) of Armenia.
Daily required intake per/person per/day according to the Health Ministry of Armenia.
The 2018 monthly minimum consumer basket in the Republic of Armenia, again according to the NSC is about 61,113 AMD ($128 US), of which 34,527 AMD ($72 US) comprises the food basket. However, the consumer basket, according to the World Bank calculations and analysis of 7,872 households across Armenia by the NSC suggests different numbers. Accordingly, the monthly minimum consumer basket according to the World Bank is around 49,219 AMD ($103 US), of which 27,807 AMD ($58 US) comprises the food basket.
The minimum food basket for the Republic of Armenia is calculated according to the food nutrition guidelines by the Ministry of Health of Armenia and requires the consumption of 2412 calories per person per day. However, it is important to note that the daily calorie requirements are not calculated for a specific age-group: those are general calculations for a human being.
As the data shows, the minimum basket of goods is about two times more than the minimum amount of state benefits that seniors receive. In this scenario, it is important to understand how 5693 survive 25,500 AMD a month.
There is no available data as to how many of these seniors live on their own and how many are taken care of by their families.
The food items purchased for this photostory correspond with the Ministry of Health’s nutritional guidelines for people per day and are the cheapest available products as of May 2019. As such, if one was going to follow these guidelines, it would cost 1054 AMD or $2.20 US per day and 31,840 AMD or about $67 US per month.
To put it into perspective – seniors on welfare receive a total amount of $50/month, while those eligible for pensions receive $87/month.
Daily price of the products – 1054.75 AMD ($2.20 US)
Monthly price of the products – 31480.1 AMD ($67 US)