BY ALISA GEVORGYAN
YEREVAN (ArmRadio)—Hassan Rouhani’s victory in the presidential elections brought significant changes in Iran’s foreign and domestic policy. The easing of tension between the West and Iran on nuclear programs was a priority of Rouhani’s foreign policy, and an agreement on the issue was reached in the Geneva talks between the parties.
The interim deal allows for Iran to continue its activities in its nuclear sites in the cities of Arak, Fordo, and Natanz. The agreement also stipulates that no additional sanctions will be imposed on Iran due to its nuclear energy program. Iran will also receive access to $4.2 billion in foreign exchange as part of the nuclear deal.
Speaking to reporters Friday, Iran’s Ambassador to Armenia Mohammad Reisi reiterated that the easing of sanctions will contribute to the mitigation of tension in the region, which will, in turn, boost economic relations between Armenia and Iran.
“Bank transfers are becoming possible after the lifting of sanctions, which is very important. You know that there is an Armenian Iranian “Mellat” Bank, which the Armenian banks have not cooperated with for a long time now. Meanwhile, we must have an opportunity to make money transfers to implement projects with Armenia.
According to the Ambassador, the construction of the Meghri Hydro Power Plant has also been blocked because of banking problems.
Speaking about the prospects of Armenia becoming a transit route for Iranian gas, the Ambassador said: “The question has not been closed. Armenian infrastructures could make it possible for us to transit gas through Armenia’s territory.”
Asked about the price of Iranian gas for Armenia, Mohammad Reisi said “Iran sends gas at international prices, but it can apply a different approach regarding friendly countries, including Armenia. “We just need to negotiate,” he added.
The Ambassador said the only agreement he is aware about is the deal on exchange of gas for electricity, which fully meets Armenia’s interests.
“Iran does not need electricity, it is an exporting country in the sphere, and the above mentioned barter deal is a vivid demonstration of Iran’s friendly attitude towards Armenia,” the Ambassador said.
Mr. Reisi reminded that Iran’s Oil Minister had declared after the talks with the Armenian Energy Minister last month that they were committed to the initial deal on gas.