by Arthur Yernjakyan
On June 23, European entrepreneurs and investors visited the idle Nairit Plant in Armenia and expressed their willingness to elaborate a program on rehabilitation and commissioning of the Plant, reports the Forum of Armenian Associations of Europe (FAAE), which organized the Europeans' visit to Armenia.
The European delegation included experts specializing in rehabilitation and management of crisis-affected enterprises. The specialists got acquainted with the situation at the Plant and decided to work out a program for rehabilitation and commissioning of the Nairit Plant. The idea arose after the Armenian state officials directly stated that they "were washing hands" of Nairit and leaving it to Moscow's discretion.
FAAE President Ashot Grigorian said that such a behavior of the Armenian Government demonstrates that the officials feel no responsibility for their country.
Earlier the Armenian officials were reliant on Rosneft (Russia), which was going to invest in Nairit Plant. However, the Russians' interest has exhausted after long negotiations. In addition, Rosneft and Pirelli (Italy) have recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding on production and delivery of synthetic rubber to Nakhodka (Far East). Moreover, Pirelli has a distributor in Armenia, which sells the Italian manufacturers' tires.
In 2006 90% of Nairit's shares were sold to Rhinoville Property Limited for 40 million USD, with the remaining 10% belonging to the Government of Armenia. In April 2010 the production at the plant was stopped. The Plant's shares are pawned and the Plant is undergoing legal proceedings.