Armenia’s parliament ratifies Armenia-Russia gas agreements in absence of opposition factions

Armenia’s parliament ratifies Armenia-Russia gas agreements in absence of opposition factions



YEREVAN, December 23. /ARKA/. Armenia’s National Assembly ratified the gas agreements between Armenia and the Russian Federation on supply of natural gas, oil products and raw diamonds, as well as on gas pricing scheme and transfer of ArmRosgasprom’s 20% shares to Russia at its sitting Monday.

Three activists of the protest held outside the parliament building against ratification entered the sitting hall and were standing there with posters. Just before the voting, the head of the Armenian national Congress opposition faction Levon Zurabyan asked for a 20-minute break. The ralliers were not in the hall anymore after the break.

Speaker of the parliament Hovik Abrahamyan said the opposition managed somehow to take away voting cards from the ruling Republican Party of Armenia deputies, and that the deputies will have to vote by hand.

Members of Armenian National Congress, Heritage, ARFD opposition parties and Prosperous Armenia party left the hall. This means out of 120 present deputies only 77 remained in the hall and all of them voted for the gas agreement.

Novosti-Armenia reporter says during the voting process several reporters in the special reporters’ glassed-in box started making noise and tapping their fingers on the window. The speaker instructed the security service to sort out the incident.

Under the agreement, Armenia’s government ceded its 20 percent stake in the national gas distribution company ArmRosgazporm (ARG) to Russia’s Gazprom holding 80% of the company’s equities. Earlier, Armenia’s minister of energy Armen Movsisyan said the government share will be ceded to clear debts

Under the agreement, Russia will be supplying 2.5 billion cubic meters of gas to Armenia in 2014-2018. The price will be determined by a formula which is used to determine the price for domestic consumers in Russia. In 2012 Gazprom supplied 1.7 billion cubic meters of gas to Armenia. -0-

14:47 23.12.2013

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