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News // Oil and gas worldwide

Armenia To Sell 45% Pipeline Shares To Gazprom

24 January 2006 , 13:03524
Armenia is ready to sell 45% of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline to Russian gas monopoly Gazprom in exchange for cheap Russian gas, Russian daily Kommersant reported on Monday.

Earlier Georgia hinted that it would be ready to sell the country?s national gas pipeline system to Gazprom if the Russian monopoly guaranteed below-market gas prices for a period of 25 years.

Armenian President Robert Kocharian who arrived in Moscow on Sunday, Jan. 22 will discuss this proposal with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, according to the paper?s sources.

Currently the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline is under construction and is expected to start operation later this year.

Russia has increased the gas price for Armenia from $54 to $110 per 1,000 cubic meters starting from 2006. ?Moscow has set an ultimatum to its strategic partner: either the gas price will increase to $110, or Armenia will give Gazprom its gas infrastructure,? the Russian daily wrote. ?If Russia takes over this pipeline, Russia will be able to control transit of Iranian gas to Georgia, Ukraine and Europe,? the paper added.

Georgian Energy Minister Nika Gilauri was negotiating with Iranian officials over possible import of Iranian gas to Georgia. He is expected to arrive back from Tehran on Jan. 23.

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