ArmInfo. Armenian Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Levon Yolyan hopes to hear a statement on Russian gas price reduction before Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's visit to Armenia scheduled for April 7.
Levon Yolyan told reporters on March 31 that the energy issues of the country are actively being discussed and the developments may be more intensive than expected. "The talks are still underway and the relevant structures are working to elaborate a policy on the gas price reduction," he said.
To recall, on March 25 Armenian Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan told reporters that it's true that the gas price will drop but it is for the talks to show how much it will drop. Abrahamyan noted that the gas price may decline for the consumers, too. "This issue was discussed with the Russian president during the Armenian president's visit to Moscow. The relevant structures have been instructed to discuss the possibility of reduction. It's true that the gas price will drop, but it is for the talks to show how much it will drop," Abrahamyan said.
To note, the March 10 talks of the Armenian and Russian Presidents in the Kremlin covered a number of issues, including energy cooperation, particularly, the price formation for the Russian natural gas supplied to Armenia. Meanwhile, on March 10, the Armenian government approved amendments to the protocols to the Russian- Armenian agreements (dated 2013) on the gas price and terms of sale of the Armenian government's stake in ArmRusgasprom. Under the amendments, the gas price for Armenia will remain at 165 USD per 1,000 cu m until 1 April 2016. Afterwards, the gas price for Armenia is to get back to its initial level - 189 USD. In 2015, Russia approved the preferential gas price for Armenia (on the border). The Government of Armenia signed a relevant protocol to the Armenian-Russian Treaty dating back to Dec 2 2013 on August 18. Under the protocol, Armenia would be importing the Russian gas for $165 per 1000 cu m instead of $189 in the period from Jan 1 up to Dec 31 2015. It was reported then that a new document would be signed in 2016 if necessary. The reduced price did not apply to ordinary consumers, however. In mid-January, Armenia's government applied to Russia for a lower gas price. The negotiations are still underway.