MOSCOW/YEREVAN, March 28. /TASS/. The Russian and Armenian Prime Ministers, Mikhail Mishustin and Nikol Pashinyan, focused in a phone call on the measures aimed at stemming the spread of novel coronavirus and emphasized the need to maintain trade flows, the Russian government said in a statement on Saturday.
"The heads of government discussed the measures taken to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus. Mikhail Mishustin and Nikol Pashinyan touched on pressing issues of the Russian-Armenian cooperation in trade and the economy and underscored the importance of maintaining the trade flows between Russia and Armenia in full," the statement said.
Meanwhile, Pashinyan wrote on Facebook that "the Russian government’s step has aroused concern among Armenian business people."
"I want to calm everyone down. This decision is not related to our cargoes. We discussed the issue with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and he confirmed that the cargoes would be delivered from Armenia to Russia and back as usual," the Armenian prime minister said.
Due to bad weather, plenty of vehicles lined up at the Verkhny Lars border checkpoint, so talks are underway - both in Russia and Georgia - to ensure that cargo transportation could get back to normal.
"I would like to thank the Russian and Georgian counterparts for constructive dialogue which will help us solve the problem aggravated by the coronavirus situation," the Armenian prime minister said.
In late December 2019, a pneumonia outbreak caused by a novel coronavirus was reported in central China’s Hubei province. After the coronavirus denoted as COVID-19 broke out of the region, it spread across China and then throughout the world, affecting more than 160 countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest reports, over 575,000 cases of patients infected with the new coronavirus have been confirmed globally, as the virus’ death toll surged to over 26,000.