Armenian Finance Minister Tigran Khachatryan and Deputy Minister Avag Avanesyan are set to visit the Islamic Republic of Iran today.
The trip comes after a meeting between Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan amid territorial tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the long-disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region. Already friendly relations between Iran and Armenia have strengthened this year mainly due to increased trade, with a 15% increase in Iranian exports to Armenia and both countries agreeing to double gas trade.
Armenian relations with Russia have been strained by Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, limiting Moscow’s ability to support Yerevan in the wake of an Azerbaijani offensive. This has brought Armenia and Iran closer together largely because close ties between Azerbaijan and Israel as well as Turkey, with Iran backing Armenia in the conflict between Baku and Yerevan.
The upcoming meeting will likely discuss further expansion of energy trade, agriculture and infrastructure. One of the major plans to be discussed will be the expanding a 2006 natural gas for electricity barter agreement. Despite this expansion in energy trade, Russia will remain Armenia’s main gas supplier. Both countries will also seek to discuss avenues to increase annual trade to USD $3 billion, a goal announced by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in October.
Andrew Nicholas Prado-Alipui is a graduate of Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations. He has contributed to the Daily Brief as an Analyst focusing on developments in Sub-Saharan Africa He will be pursuing a Master's degree at the University of South Carolina beginning in Fall 2022. Andrew is also a publisher of the Daily Brief.