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Friday, 23 December 2022

The 21st session of the Armenian-Russian intergovernmental commission held in Moscow

The 21st session of the Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation between the Republic of Armenia and the Russian Federation was held in Moscow under the co-chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister of Armenia Mher Grigoryan and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexey Overchuk.

During the session, Deputy Prime Minister Mher Grigoryan made a speech, which reads as follows,

“Dear Alexey Logvinovich,
Dear friends, colleagues,

First of all, let me thank you for organizing today's session at a high level.

The composition and number of participants of today's meeting once again proves the high degree of importance of cooperation between our countries on the platform of the intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation.

Taking this opportunity, first of all, on behalf of the Armenian side, I would like to emphasize the importance of the work of the intergovernmental commission for our country and emphasize with satisfaction the agenda full of business topics, the consistency of the parties in solving the recorded problems, and the effectiveness of the implementation of agreements.

Your personal role here, Alexey Overchuk, is obvious, for which I would like to express my special gratitude.

In fact, our agendas involve all the main issues, problems and development prospects of the socio-economic relations of our countries.

Accordingly, today's meeting will allow us to summarize the current situation regarding the most important directions of cooperation between our countries and to plan measures in the directions of the socio-economic and humanitarian spheres, which are of systemic importance for our cooperation.

The passing year was very difficult for Armenia. In addition to global problems, we have faced the severe socio-economic and humanitarian consequences of Azerbaijan's large-scale military operations against the Republic of Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.

And at the moment, it has been 12 days since the Lachin Corridor, the road of life for the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, has been de facto completely closed, and tens of thousands of families are standing on the edge of a humanitarian disaster.

Despite all the difficulties, in my speech today I considered it necessary to refer to the current positive and important results of our joint work, which can already be spoken of as facts.

Here, first of all, it is necessary to mention our mutual and absolute constructiveness and mutual understanding regarding cooperation in multilateral formats within the EAEU and CIS frameworks, which is very important in the current situation of macroeconomic turmoil.

Of course, this is a difficult task, but from my point of view, we are completely overcoming it.
In the passing year, we made all efforts for the balanced development of relations between our countries, which was clearly reflected in the sphere of economic cooperation. We have achieved record highs in mutual trade.

During the 10 months of 2022, the trade turnover between our countries was equivalent to about 3.8 billion US dollars, which is more than 85% higher than the indicator of the same period of 2021.

Moreover, the import of goods from Russia to Armenia by country of origin was equal to 2.1 billion US dollars, which is more than 53% higher than the indicator of the same period of 2021. The export from Armenia to Russia was equivalent to 1.7 billion US dollars, which is 2.5 times higher than the indicator for the same period of 2021.

Along with the consistent growth of mutual trade, we consider it necessary to further promote the increase of the share of national currencies in mutual settlements, which in turn will contribute to the strengthening of trade ties.

We consider the signing of the economic cooperation program between the governments of our states to be an important result of the current year. I am sure that next year we will jointly approve the detailed Action Plan for its implementation.

Colleagues,

I would like to note that we managed to solve complicated problems related to the current activities of a number of large companies with Russian capital in Armenia in a working order.

In the future, we are also ready to provide favorable conditions for the attraction of Russian investments, as well as the implementation of cooperative projects.

In the passing year, in the field of energy, we agreed and signed the protocol on making changes to the agreement of December 2, 2013 between the Government of the Republic of Armenia and the Government of the Russian Federation on the purchase and sale of shares of "ArmRusgazprom" CJSC and the terms of further activity.

We managed to find solutions to many serious problems that had been accumulated for years and had not been solved.

Taking into account the modern realities, I consider it important to cooperate in the field of fuel import on preferential terms.

In this context, I would like to note with satisfaction that we have already agreed and approved the indicative balances for the import of oil products and gas from the Russian Federation to the Republic of Armenia for 2023.

I should note with satisfaction that the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure of the Republic of Armenia and the Russian state corporation "Rosatom" continued active joint work in the current year in the direction of the implementation of the large-scale project of modernization and extension of the terms of operation of the 2nd power unit of the Armenian NPP.

I consider the development of transport and logistics communications to be another topic on our strategic agenda.
In this direction, we must fully use the transit potential of our countries in order to meet the needs of both business entities and our citizens.

According to our agreements, the South Caucasus Railways in Armenia continues the process of updating the rolling stock intended for passenger transportation. During the 9 months of this year, SCR's total investments made about 500 million rubles.

It is important to note that international road transport of goods between our countries continues to be carried out without issuing permits.

As for cargo transportation to and from third countries, an exchange of additional permits took place at the request of the Armenian side, as a result of which their number more than doubled in 2022.

Since May 2022, all restrictions on road passenger transport between Russia and Armenia have been lifted. Currently, 6 companies are working on 9 operating routes on a parity basis.

Despite all the difficulties, I would like to emphasize our effective cooperation in the field of air transportation.

During the 9 months of the current year, compared to the same period of the previous year, the number of flights almost doubled.

Taking this opportunity, I would like to express my gratitude to the Russian side for promptly responding to the ever-emerging crisis situations at the Upper Lars checkpoint.

Unfortunately, at this moment we have around 200 trucks stuck there, and, among other issues, it would be symbolic to dedicate today's meeting to the solution of this problem.

I will not hide that for the Republic of Armenia, the smooth operation of transport and logistics chains is, first of all, an important factor in ensuring food security.

Dear friends,

Summarizing, I would like to thank all the participants of today's session, experts, partners from the ministries and agencies of our countries for the constructive, detailed and effective discussion of the entire range of issues related to the Armenian-Russian multi-layered partnership."

Summarizing the speech, the Deputy Prime Minister congratulated the attendees on the upcoming holidays and wished them peace and well-being.

Based on the results of the session, the co-chairs of the intergovernmental commission signed a protocol, which covered all current issues of the bilateral agenda.

Then, the ceremony of redeeming special stamps on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Armenia and the Russian Federation took place.

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