ArmInfo. Armenian Economy Minister Artsvik Minasyan told reporters on April 1 that he is unaware of how much the price of the Russian natural gas supplied to Armenia will be reduced. He said that the gas price will drop by 10 AMD in the best case scenario.
He noted that he held no information about the key topic of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's upcoming visit to Armenia.
In any case, Minasyan said that the Government is trying to do everything possible to ensure the reduction in tariffs of essentials at least, which can make the goods and services made in Armenia more competitive.
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.