Iranian Ambassador to Armenia Mohammad Reis denies the existence of any agreements between Armenia and Iran for renting pastures in the Syunik region, Arka news agency reported.
In December 2012, the Iranian media reported there was a plan to sign an agreement during the expected visit of the head of the Armenian Syunik region to the Iranian province of Eastern Azerbaijan under which the former region's pastures would be rented for five years for grazing 5000 head of cattle from the province of East Azerbaijan in exchange for agricultural equipment produced in the province.
"Such an agreement was not signed between Armenia and Iran," Reis said at a press conference on Tuesday.
The ambassador explained that such issues should be decided not by governors, but by the countries' leadership, adding that special studies and official negotiations have to be conducted prior to the signing of such documents. In addition, such contracts must be ratified by the parliaments of both countries.
"It is not an issue that can be resolved secretly between the two parties," he said.
Furthermore, the ambassador said that if such an agreement is to be signed between Armenia and Iran, it will take into account the interests of both sides.
In December 2012, Armenian Minister of Territorial Administration, Deputy Prime Minister Armen Gevorgyan also confirmed that no agreement was signed for renting pastures in Syunik between Armenia and Iran.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, there are 1.118.000 hectares of pasture in Armenia. However, only 30 per cent is put to effective use.