Vedi Alco winery owner Manvel Ghazaryan and Vayots Dzor governor Harutyun Sargsyan have promised the grape farmers from the the village of Aghavnadzor that they would receive the money for the grapes purchased from them last fall within the next two weeks, villager Kostan Stepanyan said in a Thursday conversation with Epress.am.
The businessman and the governor went to meet the farmers after the latter blocked the entrance to the local school Monday morning, refusing to allow students or teachers enter the building. The villagers, who insisted during the protest that they could not afford to send their kids to school, said they would boycott classes until Vedi Alco paid their money.
“We don't believe their promises, and we do not intend to send our children to school until the money issue is resolved,” Kostan Stepanyan told our reporter, adding that the governor had come to urge the farmers to end the boycott.
Meanwhile, in an interview with Tert.am Manvel Ghazaryan expressed hope that he would be able to pay the total of 140 million drams the winery owed the farmers, at the same time, however, he did not specify a time frame for the payment. “I have hopes and expectations, but I can't promise that the money will be paid at a certain time. I do hope that I'll be able to pay it. We are constantly implementing new projects… Everyone knows that the country, the entire world has been in a crisis for several years now.
“The purchasing power of our consumers has fallen; we haven't even been able to sell the wine produced from the previously purchased grapes…” Ghazaryan said.