Thursday, February 16 2017 17:55
Naira Badalian

Subsoil resources management licensing procedure to be simplified in Armenia

Subsoil resources management licensing procedure to be simplified in  Armenia

ArmInfo. Armenian Government  simplified the subsoil management licensing procedures. 

The appropriate modifications to the licensing procedures were  approved by the Government at its session on February 16. According  to Ashot Manukyan, The Minister of Energy Infrastructures and Natural  Resources, according to the actual procedure, the subsoil operators   possess a permission to operate  lands without any competition. At  the same time, the same procedure sets forth the construction right  obtaining based only on the appropriate tender procedure. New  procedure allows to build up and operate underground facilities  without a competition or a bidding process. 

Answering the question of Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan what it  will give to the sector entities, the Minister clarified: "Today  subsoil operators, obtaining the right to operate lands, should be  ready to settle their further transactions and liabilities related  with the owners of lands mentioned. If they could obtain the land  leasehold right without a tender, than the right to   launch  construction works and  all the appropriate permits could be obtained  just and only based on the results of  a tender. This raises  additional obstacles for business, and within the purpose to cancel  those obstacles, we offer to grant such rights without a tender as  well," Ashot Manukyan stated.

Earlier Armenian Government, meeting the wishes of the mining sector  companies, has submitted to National Assembly a draft package on tax  discount modifications to make the tax load easier.  According to  Khachatryan, in the result of this arrangement, in the case the  indirect method of evaluation is applied to the royalty tax base, it  is proposed to implement the 80% limit instead of actual 90%/ It is  expected also, that starting with 2017, the base used for he  calculation royalty will stand essentially closer to the limits of  benefits obtained. 

To remind, in 2016, the industrial produce in Armenia grew 6.7%  versus 2015  (against 5.2% growth a year before) to AMD 1.429 trln  ($2.9bln). Improvement of processing industry dynamics and continuing  upward trend of mining sector, which traditionally remains the key  driver in the industry  dynamics, contributed to acceleration of  growth rates.  In Dec 2016 alone, the industrial output increased  6.4% (versus 9.3% rise in Dec 2015) to AMD 143.4 bln  (297 mln USD).

In Jan-Dec 2016 versus the same period of 2015, mining industry and  open pit mining increased 8.3% (versus 50.4% growth a year before) to  256.4bln drams. In Dec alone, the mining industry output totaled 23.6  bln drams with a 2.2% monthly growth.  Manufacturing industry  increased 7.7% y-o-y (vs 5.6% decline a year before) to AMD 885 bln ,  AMD 89.2 bln of which  - in December with 4.9% monthly growth. 

Production of non-metallic mineral products declined by 20.4% in  Jan-Dec 2016, chemical industry output fell by 8.7%, textile  production by 4.8%. In the meantime, jewelry output rose 97.7%,  production of computers, electric and optic equipment - by 27.5%,  production of tobacco- by 23.5%, and clothes - by 16.4%. In the  manufacturing industry segment, food output made up 287.3 AMD, base  metals - 152.5 bln AMD, cigarettes - 135.1 bln AMD, and beverages -   110.9 bln AMD.


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