Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 14
By Elmira Tariverdiyeva - Trend:
Armenia, a small poor country, will soon be crucified between Russia and China, and will finally have to forget about its hopes for independence.
As the Armenian Transport and Communication Minister Gagik Beglaryan said earlier, by late 2015, Chinese enterprises will present two proposals for investments to the Iran-Armenia railway.
It may seem to be good news, because no one has believed in this project for a long time, especially after the President of Russian Railways Vladimir Yakunin bluntly said that the project for construction of the said railway is ineffective.
However, all this is not so simple. Armenia has for many years suffered from its complete dependence on Russia. And in recent years this dependence has become unbearable for the Armenian political elite.
On the one hand, Russia demands complete obedience. On the other hand, faced with significant financial difficulties, Moscow pulls the Armenian economy, tied to the Russian economy, into a financial abyss.
And then, a savior - China appears. While creeping as a tiger, it is approaching the South Caucasus and the post-Soviet area. First, it is trying to economically become stronger in the region. And of course, China is a major economic power and can render support in the development of the economies of many regional countries.
However, it is necessary to understand that Beijing's actions are not altruistic. In its proper time, China will require a fee for its investments in the Armenian economy. It is not the fact that in this case, it will be as profitable for Yerevan to cooperate with Beijing as now. After being entirely dependent on a big power again, Armenia will have to act on someone's orders and fulfill the requirements again, but this time China's orders and requirements.
In addition, it is clear that while China will be strengthening its positions in Armenia, Moscow won't twiddle its thumbs and quietly contemplate how Kremlin's only vassal in the South Caucasus is being taken away from its influence.
Such a large-scale penetration of the Chinese capital in Armenia in political terms is rather dangerous for Moscow, which is the only owner of this country for now. At the same time, until the present day, Russia was explaining its political influence in Armenia by the volume of investments made in the economy of this country, however, it is clear that very soon the Chinese investments will leave behind the Russian ones.
With this in mind, soon Russia may try to prevent the growth of Chinese economic influence in Armenia and do everything in order to curtail the Chinese projects in the region.
But, in both cases, the fate of Armenia is unenviable. Today, the only question is to whom it will sell itself at a more expensive price. At the same time, the independence of Yerevan, anyway, won't be the case for yet several decades.
Edited by CN
Elmira Tariverdiyeva is Trend Agency's staff writer.