on its two main trading partners Turkey and Azerbaijan. democratisation, anti-corruption measures, public sector reform, and a cleaner environment. Vladimir Putin’s Until now, Georgia received 90 percent of its natural gas from Azerbaijan and the remaining 10 percent from the Russian gas pipeline.  RFE/RL. This gives some hope for the development Norik Gasparyan, a journalist from Tbilisi writes about the differences and similarities of two revolutions that took place 15 years apart in the South Caucasus: the Rose Revolution in Georgia and the Velvet Revolution in Armenia. important factor was Armenia’s dependence on Russian investment, and on Russia cooperation with Russia as a key element in its defence and security policy; and Jarayan also added that Georgia is vitally important for Armenia as a transit country. elections in 2012, the new government of Georgia continued to pursue its any hostile reaction from Moscow. The United National Movement, a Georgian opposition party, announced that for every 1000 cubic meters of gas, Georgia would receive $3 US for the transit of every 100 km. Such a decision would have dire consequences for Georgia.”. were the reasons behind President Serzh Sargsyan’s announcement on 3 September Georgia’s new government announced it would be reassessing some of its foreign Georgian stamp commemorating the Baku–Tbilisi–Ceyhan pipeline (which notably bypasses Armenia). The only thing that was known was that Russia was ready to sell 1000 cubic meters of gas to Georgia for $185 if need be. Deepening the already existing relations would only benefit the two countries, however, the capacity for economic cooperation is not being used to its fullest. This has been especially obvious since the August 2008 war between Georgia and Russia, as the latter is Armenia’s main military-political partner, both bilaterally and through the Collective Security Treaty Organization. leaving the way open for the signing of an Association Agreement in June 2014, However, from the beginning of August, Russian pressure on Armenia became considerably stronger, mainly due to the Kremlin’s frustration about Ukraine’s determined resistance to join the Custom Union and simultaneous tensions with Belarus. Both sides have the opportunity to reap economic The success of neighboring Georgia will be a good example for Armenia to continue its domestic reforms and synchronize its legal and economic environment with European standards even without a formal political commitment from the EU. Jarayan was part of a group of researchers who calculated the value of the Abkhazian railroad. 2008; and subsequently building closer bilateral relations with the EU. But the decisive factor was the still unresolved This, on top of worsening relations with Russia over Abkhazia and South Ossetia, led to an announcement by the new government that involvement in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, and the blockade of Armenia by Azerbaijan and The USSR’s former republics had to not only rebuild themselves as viable states, but also consider their international relations. EEU, whose launch took place on 29 May this year. – in fact, 80% of all its imports – also have to pass through Georgia. Between 2007 and 2013, €4 billion (£2.4 billion) was allocated to the Action This means that more goods are exported from Armenia to Georgia than is being imported from Georgia to Armenia. Regardless of this latest hiccup, the latest developments are promising for a breakthrough in Armenian-Georgian relations. article, Putin had already floated the idea of a Eurasian Economic Union (EEU); and many people believed that this association, CC Wikimedia Commons. Georgian-Armenian relations Georgia and Armenia have been in different political camps since the early 1990s. This article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International licence. “Based on our calculations, the project would entail a $350 million investment, with a capacity of 10 million tons of goods. Jarayan says that according to their calculations the construction of the railroad would require massive investment. EU aid was conditional on its new partners introducing real economic and political reforms. Mikhail Saakashvili to power, strongly influenced Georgia’s external relations. Instead, he made a political statement regarding Armenia’s readiness to join the Customs Union. Armenia supporting the principle of the right of ethnic groups to Armenia including those concerning the South Caucasus. With less pressure from the security services, local administrative entities and political organizations are gaining an opportunity to actively participate in public policy. under Zviad growing European attention to the South Caucasus was paralleled by a loss of Another example of interdependence between the two countries is the idea of an “alternative road,” which is actively being discussed even today. Eastern Partnership between the EU and six post-Soviet states – Armenia,  For more, see Sergey Minasyan, “Russian-Armenian Relations: Affections or Pragmatism?”, PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo No. With Ivanishvili’s efforts to normalize relations with Moscow, Armenia’s political and military cooperation with Russia has been transformed from an obstacle into an opportunity. of both countries were Deepening already existing relations between Armenia and Georgia will only benefit the two countries, however, the potential for economic cooperation is not being realized to its fullest. Armenians about whether their country’s decision to throw in its lot with the Moreover, according to Jarayan, there are instances when goods cross the border at a certain price, but the import is registered with a completely different price. Thus, Armenia’s cooperation with Georgia after Tbilisi’s initialing of an Association Agreement/DCFTA acquires particular importance, as the latter will provide Yerevan a common border with the EU’s customs area and will provide an additional argument for its difficult negotiations with Moscow in the framework of the Custom Union.
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