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Medvedev to discuss cooperation, joint projects with Armenia's Prime Minister

February 24, 2014, 3:17 UTC+3 SOCHI
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SOCHI, February 24, 2:54 /ITAR-TASS/. Russia's Head of Government Dmitry Medvedev will hold talks here on Monday with Armenian Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisyan.

It is reported on the government's official website that the two Premiers will discuss matters of curent importance concerning bilateral cooperation in trade, economic, and investment fields, including joint projects in energy, industry and infrastructure.

"Besides, it is planned to consider themes relating to Armenia's participation in the Eurasian integration process," the report says. In September 2013, during the visit to Moscow, Armenia's President Serzh Sargsyan stated his country's decision to join the Customs Union (CU) of Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan and subsequently to accede to a Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). A roadmap on Yerevan's accession to the CU and the EEU was approved at the end of December. An active and successful work is under way to implement it.

A Russian government staff member said the forthcoming talks are intended to become an important step in deepening the relations of mutually beneficial partnership between the two states. "As a result of the talks, considering accords to be reached, an acive work will be continued to promote the processes of economic integration in the Eurasian space and further to strengthen the entire spectrum of Russian-Armenian cooperation, first of all in the trade and economic fields," he emphasized.

Russia confidently holds the positions of Armenia's main economic parner as akey trading conteractant of the republic and leading foreign investor in the Armenian economy. Reciprocal trade turnover in 2013 ran at $1.34 billion, or more than 9 percent more than that in the correspondinding period of the preceding year.

The overall number of enterprises with Russian capital operating in Armenia is about 1,300 more than one-quarter of all economic entities of the republic with the participation of foreign capital. Effectively operating on the country's market are such leading Russian corporations as the OAO (public joint-stock company) Gazprom, the OAO Inter RAO Unified Energy Systems, VTB Bank, the OAO Russian Railways, the OAO Russian Aluminium, and the OAO AFK Sistema.

The fuel-and-energy sector remains a priority area for economic interaction. Agreements, signed in December 2013, during Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to Armenia, had a special importance in this respect. The documents envisage, in particular, lifting by Russia unilaterally the export duty on natural gas, petroleum products, and rough natural diamonds supppied to Armenia, and fix a pricing procedure in the delivery of natural gas to the republic. The five-year contact signed for the delivery of gas in the 2014-2018 period guarantees a stable supply of Armenia with gas on easy terms.

Work to implement a project to upgrade the operating power unit of the Armenian nuclear power station is also of substantial importance for the Armenian economiy. The work had been started with the assistance of the Rosatom state corporation for atomic energy.

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