American businesses interested in Armenia’s green energy sector – Ambassador

Armenia has a potential of developing green energy – hydropower, wind power, solar power. And there is a lot of interest among American firms to come here and help develop that potential, US Ambassador to Armenia Richard Mills told reporters in Yerevan today.

During a meeting with Armenian Minister of Energy earlier this month the Ambassador was briefed on two projects – one for garbage energy waste system, the other for hydropower development. “These could be attractive to American and other foreign investors. The proposals are now being presented to two American businessmen,” he said.

He said American businesses could invest largely if the markets were fully open, there was free competition and no barriers to exporting energy to Georgia and Iran.

“The infrastructure needs to be in place for doing that. If there were energy exports to Turkey, that would open up the market, as well and create real opportunities for investment,” Amb. Mills said.

Speaking about the issues American businesses face in Armenia, the Ambassador said “companies face a range of issues in Armenia – from protection of property rights to fair competition and the feeling that their contracts can be enforced in the courts.”

“The Armenian market is a small market. So it’s important for American businesses that they be able to move their product out to the broader region – to Georgia, to Europe and maybe even to Russia. Easiness of crossing the border, moving the product, paying the import-export duties are also issues for American businesses,” he added.

“I’m pleased we have seen progress in these areas, especially in customs area, we have seen improvements in the fairness of customs duties and I salute the government for that,” Ambassador Mills stated.

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