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Russia-Armenia import-export problems

By Messenger Staff
Monday, March 9
Russian company Black Sea Ferry Investment, which runs rail ferry transport between the Russian port of Kavkaz and Poti, has declared a price cut of USD 400 for every transported carriage. The reason for such a decrease is the serious slowing down of carriage transport between the two countries.

Senior management of the company states that every month in 2008 four journeys from Kavkaz to Poti were undertaken. The ferry boat was loaded to full capacity but from 2009 Russian export to Armenia decreased, and as is known mostly Armenian cargo was transported via this route.

Export from Armenia to Russia has always been much less than export from Russia to Armenia. The ferry boat connection between Kavkaz and Poti was opened in 2004. The ferry was owned by Swiss-registered company Preserve Capital Enterprises and mostly transported cargo to and from Armenia. Before 2004 the connection with Poti was conducted through the Ukrainian port of Ilichevsk, but in both cases the cargo from Poti to Armenia was transported onward by rail. After Kavkaz port opened the price of the transportation decreased by 25% and the time from 50 hours to 31 hours.

In 2008 Armenia exported construction materials, mineral water, fruit and vegetables to Russia whereas Russia exported to Armenia cars and other machinery, tractors and different types of grain. The dramatic decrease in traffic however has now made the continued profitability of the ferry boat problematic.