‘Railway construction should not be an end in itself’: Karen Karapetyan on Iran-Armenia railway

‘Railway construction should not be an end in itself’: Karen Karapetyan on Iran-Armenia railway

“Tsarukyan” faction MP Vahe Enfiajyan asked the Prime Minister about the relations with Iran during the National Assembly-Government question-answer session. He asked: “Do we have a plan on the railway between Armenia and Iran? We would like to address also the construction works of Meghri hydropower plant, as well as getting a new gas pipeline”.

The Prime Minister said that trade with Iran is insignificant, according to the data for 10 months, it is 62.5 million dollars, without energetics: “We will sum up growth rates, in the Iranian market we had the smallest increase in export and import data for 10 months. We have a lot to do and have a great potential for a rapid growth”. The prime minister said that the construction of the railway depends on the flow of goods, which is possible to implement that way. According to Karen Karapetyan, the construction of the railway should not be an end in itself. We need to activate the market and understand, whether as a transit country, we can move forward.

As to the construction of a new gas pipeline, Karen Karapetyan said that there is no country like Armenia that builds the pipeline, the pipeline constructor is always the gas supplier and that country is using that transit opportunity. Once we made a big step, and built a gas pipeline and solved our energy security issues. If we built a pipeline with a twice bigger diameter, it would have been four times more expensive, and we would be criticised: whether why we needed to build it if we do not use.

Enfiajyan said that he had met with various Iranian officials, who talk about the project, why it is not being implemented, the Iranian side fully states that they are even ready to invest money, but the Armenian side does not implement. The Prime Minister responded: “Bring a concrete project, where they state that the Armenian side is hindering, let us speak objectively so that you do not listen to the opposite opinion right now”.

Hripsime JEBEJYAN

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