Parliament speaker promises to set up commission to look into gas dealing

Parliament speaker promises to set up commission to look into gas dealing

YEREVAN, February 6. / ARKA /. Armenian parliament chairman Hovik Abrahamian promised today that an ad hoc parliamentary commission would be set up to make an inquiry into the all issues concerning an Armenian-Russian agreement  whereby the government ceded its 20 percent stake in the national gas distribution company to Russian Gazprom.

“I agree that we need to discuss all the issues related to this agreement. We will set up an ad hoc commission very soon to look into it,’ he said today.

A proposal by the main opposition parties to set up such commission was rejected by the parliamentary majority on February 4. 

This and some other energy agreements were first signed during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s December 2 visit to Yerevan. One of them also set the price of Russian natural gas for Armenia at almost $190 million per one thousand cubic meters.

Earlier energy and natural resources minister Armen Movsisyan said the  Armenian government sold its minority share in ARG to pay half of  a $300 million debt to Gazprom, which was  incurred as a result of  subsidizing the Russian gas price from 2011-2013. The other half of the debt was said to have been written off by the Russian company.  Gazprom was also granted 30-year exclusive rights in the Armenian energy market.

Armenia does not have natural gas or oil gas reserves and its energy sector depends entirely on imported fuel. In 2013 Gazprom delivered 1.96 billion cubic meters of gas to Armenia.

Under another Armenian-Russian contract  the Russian monopoly will be delivering 2.5 billion cubic meters of gas to Armenia across Georgia until 2018. .-0-

19:21 06.02.2014

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