(D-Glendale), to establish a trade office in Yerevan also failed.
The difference this time around, Scott says, is that the bill was
widely supported by the Armenian community, and revisions helped
assuage some of the concerns about the financial commitment it would
The bill, which the state Senate passed 21-1 on Friday, allows
private and public investments to create a trade office in Armenia
designed to serve surrounding Eastern European and southwest Asian
"I think we've worked very tenaciously," Scott said. "A lot of
Armenian Americans are interested in this bill and made contact with
One of the revisions was that the trade office would be a
three-year pilot program, rather than a permanent fixture, that would
be evaluated at the end of its tenure.
In addition, the revised bill would make the office a regional
trading facility that could eventually include areas in Western Asia
and Eastern Europe.
"When this bill passes, it will serve as a very good office in the
region, and I think it will bring a lot of trade business to
California," said Armen Janian, honorary chairman of the Armenian
American Chamber of Commerce in Glendale.
"I think it's going to encourage trade between California and the
Republic of Armenia," Scott said.
California has trade offices in Germany, the United Kingdom, Hong
Kong, Indonesia, Israel, Mexico, South Africa, Taiwan and Japan.
"We see this as a potential stepping stone to different markets in
the region," said Nick Hacopian, chairman of the board of the
Armenian American Chamber of Commerce.