Armenian opposition parties to respond soon to proposal to set up commission for considering gas-related issues

Armenian opposition parties to respond soon to proposal to set up commission for considering gas-related issues

YEREVAN, February 18. /ARKA/.  MPs from Prosperous Armenia, Heritage, Armenian Revolutionary Federation/Dashnaktsutiun and the Armenian Nation al Congress – the political forces which are not included in the ruling coalition – will discuss the ruling coalition’s draft decision presented Monday by Parliament Speaker Hovik Abrahamyan to set up an ad hoc commission for considering problems related to natural gas supply and will reply to it within two days, Ruben Hakobyan, head of heritage party’s faction in the National Assembly, said on Tuesday. 

“We will discuss it and respond to it today or tomorrow,” he told ARKA News Agency.  

On February 5, the National Assembly voted down today non-ruling parties' proposal to set up an ad hoc commission for discussing the sale of ArmRosgazprom's shares to Russia. However, one day later, the speaker didn’t rule out that a commission would be established to consider gas-related problems. Opposition-minded lawmakers voiced skepticism over this statement.  

On January 16, 2014, Armen Movsisyan, Armenian energy and natural resources minister signed an agreement with Alexey Miller, chairman of Gazprom’s board, to sell 20% of ArmRosgazprom’s shares to Gazprom.

The shares will be sold for $156 million as repayment of a $300-million debt accumulated over a period between 2011 and 2013 as a result of the arrangement with Russia to pay a former price for natural gas, $180 per 1,000 cubic meters, instead of the increased price. 

The sale means that one half of the debt is paid by Armenia, while the other half is written off by the Russian side. 

In accordance with the arrangements made earlier, Gazprom will convey up to 2.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas to Armenia. The gas price will depend on prices in Russia.  ArmRosgazprom CJSC, established in 1997, enjoys the sole right for importing and distributing Russian natural gas in Armenia. --0---

17:26 18.02.2014

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