YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Armenia is willing to invest $10 million in the exploration of oil deposits–said President Robert Kocharian on Tuesday–adding that explorations carried out up to now show that the possibility of discovering oil in Armenia is quite large.
The exploration activities are implemented by the Armenian-American geological prospecting company under the agreement signed on October 8–1996. The agreement implies implementing exploration activity in search of reserves of gas and oil in the territory of about 12 thousand square kilometers including areas in the Kotayk region–Garni–the Ararat valley–Talin and Gumri.
Joint exploration activities are to be carried out for 12 years–and the oil and gas extraction for 30 years. The total cost of the project is $100 million. The American side pledged to invest no less than $10 million. These funds were allocated for the first five year stage of the project.
The seismic survey and research activity began near Kotayk in 1997 and drilling began this winter and will soon be finished.