EBRD Interested in Iran Armenia Gas Pipeline

YEREVAN (BBC)–The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has expressed its readiness to participate in financing construction work on the Iranian-Armenian gas pipeline–the minister in charge of coordinating work on development of industrial infrastructures–Gagik Martirosyan–told Snark news agency.

He said the Russian Gazprom–Gaz de France and the US-based Schlumberger companies had expressed their readiness to form a consortium to build the pipeline. "The Iranian-Armenian gas pipeline is not only our problem but a common problem"–Martirosyan said.

The representative of the EBRD in Armenia –Alexis Drakinos–told a Snark correspondent that the construction prospects of the gas pipeline had caused great interest. He said this summer a group of experts will visit Armenia to study this project–and on the basis of their conclusion a decision will be taken on whether the EBRD will take part. He said EBRD participation would attract more foreign investors. He added that French and American companies had declared their intention to join them.

Armenian Ministry of Energy data say the total cost of construction of the Iranian-Armenian gas pipeline is estimated at 120m dollars. Its length would be 140 km–made up of 100 km through Iranian territory and 40km via Armenian territory.

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