ArmInfo. Armenia and Iran have great potential for the growth of trade and economic relations. Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan announced this on January 17 from the rostrum of the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia.
According to him, the data for 10 months of the previous year shows that the trade turnover between the two countries without taking into account the energy sector amounted to $ 62.5 million, which is an insignificant indicator. Import-export volumes are also insignificant, which increased by only 9%. "There is a huge amount of work to be done in the bilateral relations to ensure take-off," Karen Karapetyan said. He recalled the recently created free trade zone in Meghri, which gives grounds for optimism in resolving this issue.
As for the project of building the Iran-Armenia railway, Karapetyan said that its implementation should not become an end in itself. Moreover, there are prerequisites for the effective use of existing routes, which will not put an additional burden on business. The government of Armenia will return to the issue of building the Iran-Armenia railway when the market is activated. As of today, there is an interest from one private company for the construction of the Meghri hydropower plant on the border with Iran. The prime minister also considered it inexpedient to build a new, more powerful Iran-Armenia gas pipeline. According to him, the initiative to build a new transit gas pipeline must come from the country - the gas supplier. At one time a gas pipeline with a diameter of 120 mm was built, which plays an important role in ensuring the country's energy security. According to it, Armenia annually receives 250-400 million cubic meters of Iranian gas, despite the fact that the capacity of the gas pipeline is much higher. In this situation, the construction of a more powerful gas pipeline would cost four times as much, and without having transit possibilities, its cost can be transformed into a tariff. "There will be a transit gas pipeline or not, time will tell, but in this case the main role will belong to the gas supplier," Karen Karapetyan said.