Wednesday, March 23 2016 16:59
Naira Badalian

Armenia Minister of Energy calls for consolidation of joint efforts aimed at restarting Nairit plant

Armenia Minister of Energy calls for consolidation of joint efforts aimed at restarting Nairit plant

ArmInfo. On March 21 the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Armenia called for consolidation of joint efforts for restarting Nairit, a giant chemical plant in Armenia, during a meeting held with the former employees of the plant.

According to the ex-director of the plant Karen Israelyan, who attended the meeting, Minister Levon Yolyan informed about negotiations with RT-Khimkomposit" Russian holding. The Minister also said that the results of the negotiations will be known after April 1. At the same time Levon Yolyan called for all the beneficiaries to consolidate efforts aimed at re-launch of the plant, "As a result the meeting with the newly- appointed minister was held in an environment of constructive dialog", ex-director of Nairit plant informed.

To note, on March 16 Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Armenia Levon Yolyan stated that Russian "RT- Khimkomposit" holding, which is a part of "Rostekh" State Corporation, is preparing proposals to the Armenian government for restarting Nairit, a giant chemical plant in Armenia. At the same time by the order of Armenian Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Levon Yolyan, a working group has been set up to research the current condition of Nairit Plant CJSC and the further steps to help the plant overcome the current situation. The working group is headed by Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources L. Shahverdyan, and includes representatives of the Ministry, Nairit Plant and Yerevan Thermal Power Plant. The Energy Minister has instructed the working group to submit the proposals on development of Nairit Plant in the shortest time possible. 

To note, Nairit Plant has been idle since April 2010. At the moment the debts of Nairit Plant amount to 50 billion AMD (about 130 million USD). The Plant's shares were given as security against the CIS InterStateBank's 70 mln USD loan provided in 2006 for 5 years - till late Dec 2011 - at 12.5% p.a. In 2006, 90% of Nairit Plant's shares were sold to Rhinoville Property Limited (UK). The latter owns an 89,999% stake in the plant, Armenian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources - 4,496%, Gazprom Armenia CJSC (previously ArmRusgasprom) - 3,596%, and Yerevan Thermal Power Plant - 1,907%.  In 2015 the World Bank conducted a financial and technical audit at Nairit Plant at the request of the Armenian Government. The WB considers the re-launch of the plant to be inexpedient because it will need at least $250 mln.  But even if investors are found, the WB experts do not think the product will be competitive, because it will have a high prime cost.  Most experts say that the results of the WB audit can be considered as recommendations to the Plant's bankruptcy process.  

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