February 27, 2014 - 17:17 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Armenian government upheld Thursday, Feb 27 the decision to set up a free economic zone in AJA Holding CJSC and recognize AJA Free Economic Zone CJSC the organizer of the zone, ARKA reported.
“Some 150 foreign companies are planned to operate here, with more than 1,000 jobs o be formed,” Economy Minister Vahram Avanesyan said at the Feb 27 Cabinet meeting. “$10 million in investments will be provided, with the zone to launch operations before 2015, after final approval of the project.”
Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan welcomed the project as having a major potential and noted that the initiative belongs to the private sector.
“The project will allow Armenians across the world engaged in jewelry business to open their businesses in Armenia. These enterprises will be small, but they will create more than 1,000 new jobs.”
According to the project posted at the Armenian government’s official website, the initiative to create a free economic area for jewelry, diamond-cutting and watch industries belongs to the Armenian Jewelers Association.
The project envisages attracting 120 to 150 foreign companies, creating up to 2,000 new jobs within three years and exporting products worth $200 to 250 million worth every year.
The free economic zone (32,400 square meters, 12,750 of which will be used for industrial purposes) will be opened in Yerevan's Aviacomplex plant territory.
The project will be implemented in three stages. About $10.97 million is needed to acquire areas in 2013 to 2015. Of this amount, $6 million will be obtained in loans and the remaining spending will be covered by the zone organizer.
The organizer company plans to sign an agreement with the Armenian government for 20 (+10 years) and to submit a new business plan upon expiration of the first decade.
The first free economic zone in Armenia started functioning on August 1, 2013 on the territory of RAO Mars CJSC and Yerevan Scientific Research Institute of Mathematical Machines. The zone run by Sitronix company occupies 100,000 square meters. It is intended for high technologies and new technologies. One of the necessary conditions for creating a new economic zone is orientation to export.