Mar 16, 2011

Armavia has no intention to repay its debt to Armenia’s Zvartnots international airport

Armavia, Armenian national air company, has no intention to repay its debt to Zvartnots International Airport in Yerevan, Mikhail Bagdasarov, owner of the company, said Wednesday at a news conference. “If a debt is smaller than monthly spending, this is a normal debt,” he said. “We have no problems with repayment, but we will never do it, since there are unwritten rules, which must be observed.

Venting anger at Zvartnots, he said that Armavia receives the airport’s services at high prices, and if the air company starts paying debts ahead of schedule, it will find itself in greater disadvantage.

Earlier, Zvartnots suspended Armavia’s flights because of the latter’s debts. However yesterday, the airport resumed operating the company’s flight.

Armenia’s national air carrier Armavia suspended its flights scheduled for today morning by an hour in a protest against high prices set by Armenia Zvartnots International Airport.

In an angry statement the carrier said services at Zvartnots airport are 3 times more expensive than the same services at Moscow airports and 2.-2.5 times more expensive than at airports in Paris, Rome and other European cities.

Bagdasarov stressed that the company operates 950 flights a month and 500 flights in winter months, but the conditions are the same as for companies which operate four flights a month. He said that those companies operating a great number of flights enjoy 50% discount in Russia and Europe.

The owner of the Armavia said that the financial resources lent by VTB Bank (Armenia) under today’s agreement wouldn’t be spent for repaying the debt, since as a rule, bills for the airport-provided services are paid within one month.

Russia-owned Bank VTB (Armenia) has opened a credit-documentary limit for Armenian Mika Group of companies in the amount of $20 million as part of its corporate business fostering strategy. The funds will be used to finance various projects of Mika Group that comprises Armenia’s national air carrier Armavia, Mika Ltd., which imports fuel from Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece and Ukraine, and Mika Cement.

Armavia National Air Company was established in 1996. The company meets IATA international requirements.

Armavia operates over 100 flights a day to more than 40 destinations in 20 countries.

It possesses 11 aircrafts - А320-3, А319-3, CRJ-200, Yak-42-VIP and Il-86. A new Superjet -100 is expected to be added to them soon.


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