YEREVAN, February 20. /ARKA/. A commission to look into the caloric value of Russian gas shipped to Armenia will be set up, Armenian Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan said Thursday at a regular Cabinet meeting.
“Despite many specialists’ explanations, the conformity of the caloric value of this gas to the published figures is still called into question, and we ought to give full and complete answers to this question,” he said.
ArmRosgasprom, the importer and distributor of Russian natural gas in Armenia, says on its official website that the quality of this gas is even higher than the set intergovernmental standards. According to the company, in recent years this figure was fluctuating between 8,000 and 8,400 kilocalories against 7,600 kilocalories per one cubic meter – the benchmark standard set.
The premier said referring to experts’ explanation that it is impossible to lessen artificially the caloric value of gas. However, he said, public distrust toward these statements prompted him to admit the necessity of establishment of a commission with involvement of various nongovernmental organizations in it to give the experts an opportunity to explain everything.
Sargsyan instructed Vache Gabrielyan, the head of the government’s administration, to prepare an appropriate order for setting up a commission headed by the economy ministry.
“It is necessary to involve all concerned nongovernmental organizations, including the organization protecting consumers’ rights, into the commission,” he said.
Robert Nazaryan, chairman of the Public Service Regulatory Commission, said that both individual gas consumers and companies complain about the imported gas quality saying its caloric value is less than 7,900 kilocalories – the permitted minimum.
Owners of greenhouses are not happy about the gas quality as well, but Nazaryan said their dissatisfaction is connected with relatively cold winter, compared with previous years.
He said caloric value is measured just on the border. Besides, there are four laboratories for gauging caloric value – one of them belongs to ArmRosgasprom, the second and the third to Yerevan and Hrazdan thermal power plants and the third to Ararat Cement Plant. All of them, as large gas consumers, are anxious to have high-quality gas.
«Nevertheless, some economic entities are not satisfied with this indicators,» Nazaryan said. «It had been offered them in May 2013 to purchase one separate independent laboratory which cost $25,000 to $60,000, but since then not a single company has applied for buying it.» -0--