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 Monday, September 2 2019 23:09
Marianna Mkrtchyan

AmCham applies to Pashinyan asking for early solution to the  situation on Amulsar project 

AmCham applies to Pashinyan asking for early solution to the  situation on Amulsar project 

ArmInfo.The American Chamber of Commerce in Armenia (AmCham) has applied to the Armenian Prime Minister regarding the long-lasting issue around one of our  member companies Lydian Armenia CJSC Amulsar project.

The statement in particular states: ''AmCham is a leading business  association founded in Armenia in 2000, and currently represents the  interests of more than 140 small, medium and large companies  operating in almost all sectors of the Armenian economy. Our mission  is to promote the local and foreign investments in Armenia and to  advocate for fostering a more favorable business climate, as we  believe that fair and equitable treatment of investments are of  outmost importance not only for local Armenian and foreign companies,  we represent, but also for the economy and well-being of Armenia.   This genuine belief has prompted AmCham to release 2 statements  during the last 13 months regarding the Lydian Armenia Amulsar  project.

AmCham truly recognizes the importance of professional and impartial  audits in the mining sector, still, regrets that Lydian's Amulsar  project has been the only project so far that was pressured to  undergo 3 consecutive audits while the roads to the project remain  illegally blocked for over a year now. This is despite the fact that  Lydian's Amulsar project has been deemed compliant to IFC and EBRD  international highest standards on the environmental and social  management.

We regret that even after the 3rd audit, and after your recognition  of the high standards Lydian adheres to, Lydian's access to its  Amulsar project has not been restored, and a possible need for yet  another study on the Environmental Impact Assessment is being  discussed. While we share the environmental concerns of the society  and strongly believe that businesses should comply with sustainable  development standards, we also believe that fair and equal treatment  of businesses should exclude a selective approach and all the  requirements imposed by the State should be evenly and fairly  applicable to all the industry players. This is especially important  amidst your public statement that the campaign against Lydian was  organized and financed by certain business interests of certain  parties. This is a matter of outmost concern and we hope that these  claims will be duly investigated.

Honorable Mr. Prime Minister, AmCham is not only concerned about the  unfair treatment of its member, one of the biggest investors in  Armenia, but as a leading business organization, we are also  concerned about the negative impact of the issue around Amulsar  project for about a year. It sends negative signals to the potential  investors and makes Armenia an unattractive country for investments.   While the State is making efforts to attract investments to Armenia,  potential investors are, at the same time, alerted that foreign  investing companies in Armenia are not protected and treated fairly.

We are convinced that further delays around Lydian Armenia's Amulsar  project will deepen the issue and can go endlessly having further  negative consequences for the business climate and, eventually, ruin  the attractiveness of the country for investments. Therefore, we urge  the Government of Armenia to act upon for a quick and fair resolution  of the issue.

We share the Government's vision that Armenia should thrive and have  a developing economy, where the principle of the rule of law will  apply to all the investors doing business for the benefit of Armenia  and provide equal and fair opportunities to all the businesses''.

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