Armenian surrogate mothers bear children for the Israelis

Not long ago, the chairman of the Public Council of Armenia Vazgen Manukyan said that most of the Armenian surrogate mothers give birth at the order of the Israelis, because, I quote: "there the surrogacy is forbidden," and also noted that the law banning surrogacy in Armenia "hangs thick in the air."

I’m very sorry, but I have to disappoint Mr. Manukyan - surrogacy in Israel has been  permitted since 1996 already when the country adopted the corresponding law. I fully admit that a certain percentage of Israelis suffering from infertility, is really turning to surrogate mothers from Armenia, but the reasons are quite different from what Mr. Manukyan has said.

First, it may be due to the lower cost of the programs. For comparison - the services of a surrogate mother from Armenia will cost a family about 20-30 thousand dollars, while in Israel, the price ranges from 50 to 70 thousand. The difference is obvious.

Secondly, the procedure of surrogate motherhood in Israel is rather complicated. Agreements concluded between the parties, must be approved by a panel of religious leaders, doctors and social workers. Bureaucratic red tape and long lines simply force infertile couples to use the services of foreign surrogate mothers.

Now what for the ban on surrogacy in Armenia is concerned. The practice of other countries shows that the prohibition of surrogacy never does any good. It’s important to understand that if a couple really wants to have their own child, they will always find a way to make their dream come true. For example, surrogacy is widespread in South-East Asia, where the cost of the programs is not much higher than in Armenia. The growing demand for such services in the third world country proves once again that no distance can become a hindrance for those who dream about happy parenting. So maybe it isn’t necessary to put a spoke in such people’s wheel and prevent them from becoming mothers and fathers? I'm not even talking about the financial losses in revenue from surrogacy for foreign citizens which the state will suffer if the law is adopted.