Iran without sanctions is beneficial for the South Caucasus
The lifting of sanctions against Iran that took place this weekend is beneficial for the South Caucasus countries. The absence of economic restrictions may allow Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia to strengthen relations with their southern neighbor, which can become a truly powerful economic player in the region. Experts Rovshan Ibrahimov, Alexander Iskandaryan and Peter Mamradze spoke about this.
First of all, political scientist and economist Rovshan Ibrahimov expects activization of economic cooperation between Azerbaijan and Iran in the field of logistics.
"By the end of 2015 the President of Azerbaijan gave appropriate instructions to start construction of transport routes on the North-South route and in particular to build a bridge and the Astara Railway, the length of which is 8.4 km. Iran is to build appropriate communications. In addition, I think that the intensification of transport routes won't be limited to this railway, but it will be rapidly extended to other routes. Azerbaijan may be a bridge between Russia and Iran, providing its territory for transportation of goods,'' the expert noted.
The General Director of the Caucasus Institute, Alexander Iskandaryan, also predicts deepening and broadening of economic ties between Armenia and Iran.
"Restrictions imposed on our relations were linked with Iran's inability to carry out joint projects due to sanctions. These projects are a power line from Iran to Russia, the interaction of the electricity networks of Iran, Armenia and Georgia, a new model of gas supplies in order to supply more Russian gas to Georgia, as well as more Iranian gas to Armenia, and the construction of various types of roads from Iran to the Black Sea. Now Iran has an opportunity to implement such projects, and Armenia has an opportunity to extend contacts with it," Iskandaryan said.
The head of the Institute for Strategy Management, Peter Mamradze, is also awaiting only positive results for Georgia after the sanctions against Iran were lifted.
"First, there are the Iranian businessmen who have decided to invest money in Georgia. This process that only increases in strength and intensity, because money is to be directed to Iran. The sanctions were very difficult for the Iranian people. I talked to the Iranians who came to Georgia, and they noted that Iran is an impoverished country because there were no investments after the imposition of sanctions. They couldn't sell what they had. In this regard, the situation will be beneficial both for them and for us," he said.