YEREVAN, February 26. /ARKA/. Losses of Armenian Nairit chemical plant have reached $200-400 million, said Artsvik Minasyan, member of parliament from ARF Dashnaktsutiun opposition party and head of commission for finance, credit and budget issues.
The party bought a motion to include setting up a temporary commission for Nairit in the agenda. According to the motion, the commission will have to study arrears of pay, the plant operations, negotiations with the Russian side about investments and “everything that is connected with the plant”.
“According to our estimates and various experts’ analyses, the losses have already reached $200-400 million in the plant. The conclusion is made based on the legal actions against the enterprise”, Minasyan said.
The arrears of pay only are $12 million now, which is a big amount, he said. The commission should study thoroughly this issue, he added.
Member of parliament from Armenian National Congress (ANC) opposition party Aram Manukayn, in his turn, said he has “an impression the government wants to flatten the enterprise and declare it bankrupt”.
In response, the minister of energy and natural resources Armen Movsisyan said if it was true, the government could have done it several years ago.
“If we wanted to close down the plant, we would have suggested paying arrears for three months and sacking them”, he said.
The minister urged to stop making ignorant statements about which kind of rubber is more competitive and which one will be manufactured in Armenia. Rosneft said they are ready to invest $500 million, and it is better now to wait for the negotiations to be completed, Movsisyan said.
Speaker of parliament Hovik Abrahamyan has not ruled out such a commission dealing with Nairit problems will be created. The authorities have nothing to hide, the speaker said. Abrahamyan promised the opposition parties will have a chance to discuss the issue in the parliament.
Nairit was the only plant in the Soviet Union producing chloroprene rubber. The plant was closed in 1989 for environmental reasons and resumed operating partially in 1992. In 2006, 90% of Nairit’s shares were sold to British Rainoville Property Limited for $40 million. The remaining 10% belong to the Armenian government. The plant operations were suspended in 2010.
On December 25, 2013, Rosneft, Pirelli Tire Russia and Rosneft-Armenia signed a memorandum of understanding in Yerevan to set up a joint venture for butadiene-styrene rubber production. Armenia’s premier was cited as saying Rosneft was planning to invest 400 million dollars in construction of a new plant in Armenia. Russian ambassador to Armenia Ivan Volinkin said specialists from Nairit will get employment in the new plant. –0--