ArmInfo. The free economic zone Meghri on the border with Iran will be launched in late November 2017. This was stated by the Minister of Economic Development and Investments of Armenia Suren Karayan on October 18 at a news conference. As the minister pointed out, at present there are 2 projects on creation of FEZ - Syunik and Meghri. In the near future, they are planned to be merged into one large free economic zone. "Work on the construction of FEZ" Meghri "has already started, in the end of November we will try to launch it," Suren Karayan said.
In the first ten days of October an official visit of the governmental delegation of Armenia to the Islamic Republic of Iran took place. The Armenian Government attached great hopes to this visit. As earlier, on August 21, the head of the Armenian government Karen Karapetyan stated that certain specifics on the terms of the creation of the Free Economic Zone with Iran would appear after the visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The prime minister said then, already at the end of November a certain platform will be formed. "We went through a lot of things in this issue - both successful negotiations and unsuccessful ones, but the platform will be uniquely created, and more specifically the issue will be discussed in the near future during the visit to Iran," Karapetyan said. It should be reminded that on August 3 the Government of Armenia approved the draft decision on the establishment of JSC Meghri Free Economic Zone, which was launched earlier in October 2017. At the first stage, it is planned to equip the territory adjacent to the Meghri checkpoint, and also to form physical infrastructures. This will be followed by the provision of appropriate privileges and the involvement of companies in the FEZ. Further Minister Suren Karayan informed about the new launch dates - November of this year. It should be noted that the total cost of construction of FEZ in Meghri is estimated at $ 32 million, of which $ 28 million is capital expenditure. The construction of the FEZ on the border with Iran is one of the priority investment programs of the Armenian government and provides for the creation of a free economic zone with an area of 10-15 hectares, with the possibility of further expansion to 45-50 hectares. Despite the fact that the FEZ has not yet been built, there are already numerous applications from various companies that have expressed a desire to start work in the FEZ - more than 10 companies from Russia, there are also from Iran and Europe. According to the Ministry of Economy, operation of the FEZ will create 2,500 jobs and increase exports from Armenia by 30%. The main goal of the FEZ is the development of trade and economic relations with Iran and other countries of the region, the development of the Syunik region, as well as the positioning of Armenia as a link linking Iran with the EEU countries and Georgia. It is assumed that 100-120 companies will operate there, whose revenues in 10 years will be $ 52 million. The products are planned to be exported to Iran, the countries of the EEU, the Middle East, Turkmenistan and others. The total investment of all companies for 10 years is planned to increase to $ 350-400 million. The functioning of the FEZ has already been legislated in the Customs Code of the EEU. In total, seven such zones will operate in the system of the duty-free system.