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Armenia, Russia trade relations in steady decline

11 June 2014 [12:40] - TODAY.AZ
By AzerNews

Trade relations between Armenia and Russia is in a steady decline since the end of May, 2014.

The Russian market is one of the main export market for Armenia, and Russia is the leading exporter to Armenia.

The only road, which links Armenia to Russia is still closed after a mudslide on the Russian-Georgian border on May 17. The reopening of the road is expected at the end of June.

Now Armenia's poor economy faces new challenges in export of its products to Russia.

Several Armenian export companies have suspended their activities, as the Upper Lars customs point is closed and they cannot export their products to Russia.

Local economists predict serious consequences for the Armenian economy, as the agricultural season has started. They said almost half of the Armenian population, who lives in the villages will lose their incomes.

However, the summer harvest season was unpleasant for Armenia, as nature was ruthless towards the country. At the end of March, abnormal cold weather has demolished almost 90 percent of the apricot harvest which Armenia is so proud of.

Apricot is one of the main fruits in Armenia's exports. Armenia expected 55,000 tons of apricot harvest, but the country has already lost 50,000 tons. Armenia will not export apricot this year, as it lacks of apricot harvest.

The mudslide on the Russian-Georgian border also reduced significantly the number of various products in the Armenian markets. Local markets face deficit in tomato paste, as the Armenian producers lack of glass packages, which they import from Russia. The trucks loaded with glass packages wait for the opening of the Upper Lars customs point.

The closed road to Russia is the next serious blow to the Armenian economy, which is still unable to achieve any progress. Armenia hastens Georgia, and even offered assistance to complete the restoration works on the road. This road plays an important role in Armenia's economic relations with the external world, as the country is under blockade in the South Caucasus region due to its aggressive policies towards neighboring Azerbaijan and Turkey.

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