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No Deal: Armenian Airline Armavia Again Accuses Zvartnots Airport

The dispute between Armenian national air carrier Armavia and Armenia International Airports (which owns Yerevan’s Zvartnots International Airport) was resolved on Tuesday — the companies reached a mutual agreement, General Department of Civil Aviation of Armenia press secretary Nelly Cherchinyan told Epress.am.

“As a result of negotiations between the two companies which lasted till today, it was decided to develop such a policy of debt repayment that in the given schedule Armavia will be able to both pay its debt and work simultaneously. The conditions for both parties are mutually beneficial,” said Cherchinyan.

A statement issued by Armavia, however, states that though the company made concessions and the parties reached some agreements, the airport again changed its decision. The airline considers the matter unresolved and has signed no document.

Zvartnots Airport declined to comment on the Armavia statement, saying that there was agreement at the end of their meeting and at this time they are unaware of any dissatisfaction on the part of Armavia.

Recall, on Mar. 6, Armavia, citing increasing airport tariffs, went on strike, suspending Yerevan-Moscow and Yerevan-Rostov flights that morning.

In response, Armenia International Airports (AIA) said that Armavia, being a national carrier, unlike other airlines, enjoys special rates provided by AIA.

“Moreover, according to a telegram from RosNavigatsiya, due to accumulated debts, Armavia arilines is prohibited from flying to Russia and entering Russian airspace.

“Apparently, rates in not only Armenia, but also Russia are expensive for the air carrier,” AIA said in its statement.

Earlier, Armavia owner Mikhail Baghdasarov informed reporters that the company would file for bankruptcy if Zvartnots didn’t reduce its rates by 25%. An Armavia spokesperson also said that the Zvartnots’ airport services are three times higher than Moscow airports and on average two times more expensive than in Europe (1.5 times more expensive than Paris airports; 2.5 times more than in Rome).

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