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Armenians alarmed by the launch of Azerbaijan-Iran railway

Armenians alarmed by the launch of Azerbaijan-Iran railway
“1in.am” : “Azerbaijan becoming a threat for the poor and emptying Armenia”

Armenia, excluded from all regional projects due to their policy of occupation, is about to face another fiasco. Following the launch of the massive Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway , another large-scale transportation project – Azerbaijan-Iran railway, is about to be implemented. Armenian media is ringing alarm bells about the implementation of a new project while the country remains isolated. These pieces mainly blames the ineffectual policies of the state leadership. It is often stated that such projects will exacerbate the poor economic situation in the country. For instance, in the "1in.am” portal which is popular with Armenian public, author Sargis Archruni writes that a test train consisting of 6 wagons carrying wood products from Russia has reached Iran through Astara-Astara. This railway aims to integrate Azerbaijani and Iranian railways. The full launch of the railway is scheduled to take place in March. "Astara (Iran) – Astara (Azerbaijan) railway is expected to be inaugurated this March with the participation of the officials of both countries. The length of the railway is 10 kilometers, 8 kilometer of which is from Astara to Iranian border and the rest of it is to the Iranian city of Astara. This railway is the continuation of Gazvin-Rasht railway and "North-South” project. The integration of Russian, Azerbaijani and Iranian railway systems will be possible through this project. IRNA- official agency of Iran has published an interesting article about this” – writes the Armenian publication. Later, it is


 

 

Later it is mentioned thatBaku, Moscow and Tehran have begun an active negotiation process on the launch of the passenger train from Astara to Moscow. Iranian Railway Director General Abbas Nazari said all the countries of the region were already informed about the trilateral project. Nazari has stated that the European countries are showing great interest in the Astara-Astara railway corridor. They hope that this transportation corridor will deliver goods to India through the Persian Gulf. The Armenian author does not hide his concern that a new prospective cooperation platform is being formed in the region with the participation of Azerbaijan, Iran and Russia, and this format of cooperation is being strengthened by the summits of presidents of the three countries. "With this project, which is of great importance to Azerbaijan, the political and economic isolation of Armenia is expanding. The official circles of Baku do not deny the fact that the North-South project is attractive not only for economic reasons, but also for political ones. Because, with this project, Armenia is left out of regional cooperation. The most striking point is that such global programs lead Armenia to becoming a less attractive country for Iran. Iran is already starting to implement alternative ways of access to European and Russian markets through Azerbaijan" - the author remarks. The article further notes that Tehran has repeatedly stated in recent years that Armenia is a major partner in global communications projects: "But the authorities' reaction is not adequate, to put it mildly. Tehran can sit down and wait long for Yerevan to overcome Russia's pressure and bans".


 

The author then touched on the status that is stuck to Armenia. Although the author does not mention, he probably has in mind the term "outpost" of Russia, which is said about his country. "As a result, our country loses its function as a subject. We are excluded from all integration projects. On the other hand, Armenia is on the verge of a deadlock in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process. This also means the demographic statistics and economic figures of Azerbaijan and Armenia. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the closed borders strengthen Armenia's dependence on Russia, suppresses its economy and deprives it of developmental resources. In this context, Azerbaijan essentially becomes the main actor of all regional projects. This will lead to the uneven development of the economies of the two countries. And, of course, it will not be in favor of Armenia. Azerbaijan, which is making billions of dollars of profit, becomes a threat to Armenia which is turning into a poor and vacant country. Failure to accept this fact is the irrationality and inadequacy of our state, the political system. An indicator of the effective policy of the Armenian authorities is not a prolongation of the negotiation process, but on the contrary, on the basis of rational compromises, on the basis of a quick settlement of the conflict. But the time doesn't wait and it is not working for the benefit of Armenia. In order to achieve the maximum result from the negotiation process, the processes must be carefully evaluated, "the author notes at the end of the piece.


 

We should mention that Yerevan has recently claimed that Iran and Armenia were working on a number of large-scale projects. But all this remained a statement. Firstly, the military junta does not have the finances to implement it. Secondly, it is more profitable and beneficial for Iran to implement the project with Azerbaijan. Iran-Armenia railway construction is not economically advantageous. Armenia's export potential is at level zero. Although this country is a market for Iranian goods, it can not be considered a large and profitable market. The economic situation in Armenia is fragile, the purchasing power of the population is extremely low. On the other hand, strategic areas in this country are controlled by other states. That is, there is no area to invest in. It is naive to think of Iranian merchants opening a store in Yerevan as the presence of large trade relations between two countries. According to the State Customs Office of Iran, Italy and Azerbaijan place first and second among the countries who import Iranian goods. Armenia comes in the fifth place. This country imported some $ 160 million worth of products from Iran. However, in the previous years, Armenia would come second place after Italy. This shows that the Armenian economy is in deep crisis, but also shows that the population does not have the purchasing power.


 

Thus, Armenia has no potential for extensive economic cooperation. On the other hand, the state's failure to pursue an independent policy, advocating groundless allegations against its neighbors, and promoting falsified genocide hinders the development of relations with all its neighbors.


 

Azer


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