ArmInfo. South Caucasus Railway CEO Sergey Valko and GeoProMining Group President Roman Khudoly signed an agreement to organize transportation of gold ore from the Sotsk deposit to the GeoProMining Gold company's Ararat gold recovery plant in 2020.
According to the SCR press service, the agreement provides for a possible increase in 2020 of the volume of ore transported along the Zod-Ararat route with a length of 269 kilometers to the level of 2019. This year, the entire volume of ore transportation from Zoda to Ararat is carried out by rail, and by the end of the year it is planned to transport 1.5 million tons of ore, which is 15% more than in 2018. Since 2008, as a result of significant investments by the two companies, the actual growth in transportation and processing of ore was three times.
GeoProMining Gold company upgraded the Ararat factory, introducing the Albion innovative technology for processing refractory ores in 2014, and also installed a car dumper for transshipment of ore from the railway, which helped stabilize the supply of ore to the factory. GPM Gold's investment in these projects amounted to $ 160 million.
On the part of SCR, it has been restored that has not been working since the beginning of the 90s. electric centralization station at the Zod station, overhaul of the loading route of the station was carried out, a semi- automatic blocking system based on microprocessor technologies was restored on the Shorzha-Zod section, which ensured non-stop movement throughout the entire section of the Zod-Ararat route and reduced the time of ore delivery to the consumer. The state of the contact network has been significantly improved, overhaul of tracks using reinforced concrete sleepers has been carried out, which has increased the weight and speed of trains. In general, since 2008 more than 2 billion drams have been invested in the indicated works in the Sevan-Zod section.
According to Sergey Valko, GeoProMining Gold is the largest partner of the railway, and the share of goods transported for it reaches 55% of SCR freight. <The company's investments in the modernization and maintenance of track facilities in this direction are in the focus of SCR management. Since 2018, the company has also begun the planned renewal of rolling stock. In 2018, 40 new gondola cars were purchased, another 40 new gondola cars are planned to be purchased before the end of this year>, the head of the railway said.
In turn, the president of the GeoProMining Group of Companies, Roman Khudoly, expressed satisfaction with the cooperation with SCR. <The situation of 2008-2009 was still remembered, when the railway hardly provided even small transportation compared to today's volumes from Sotka to Ararat due to constantly arising technical problems. At present, our partner is successfully ensuring annual growth in traffic from the field to the factory in Ararat, which allows us to implement our investment and production plans without interference, "said Roman Khudoly.
South Caucasus Railway CJSC is a 100% subsidiary of Russian Railways OJSC and provides concession management of Armenian railways. The railway infrastructure of Armenia was transferred to the concession management of SCR CJSC in accordance with the Concession Agreement signed on February 13, 2008. The concession management period is 30 years with the right to extend for another 10 years.