Bulgarian-Turkish Investment

According to a recent report from Bulgarian News Agency BTA, Trakia Glass Bulgaria which is owned by Sisecam (a Turkish-owned glass-maker) – is due to make a $60m investment “in capacity expansion in 2012.”

As reported in a news article on the web, these funds will be put towards “increasing the capacity of an existing tableware furnace and opening a second furnace at its plant near Bulgaria’s northeastern town of Turgovishte.”  This upgrade will do a lot.  Indeed, the current furnace’s daily glass output will be expanded by a staggering 18 tons.  As well, at the new facility, there will be an increase in production of up to 200 tons of tableware glass each day.

As well, at some point, this will lead to a job-creation scheme and provide a further 200 jobs.  Right now anyway the employee count at Sisecam’s tableware glass unit stands at 1,000.  Just a few months ago, earlier this year, the fifth production facility was opened at the plant which is set to “manufacture motor vehicles.”

To date, the invetment in the Bulgarian unit made by Sisecam has reached $405m.

Armenian Investment is Working

Increased Investment Opportunities for Armenia

Good news for Armenian investments. According to the country’s parliament chairman, Hovik Abrahamian, attempts are being made to push for investments in the transport and energy sectors throughout the BSEC countries.* As well, the greater cohesion between BSEC member countries, the better for all, especially since this is the current goal of the National Assembly of Armenia. This is bound to lead to an increase in investment opportunities for the country.

Armenia Develops Iranian Energy Cooperation

When Armenia attempts to work with Iran, according to Armen Movisyan (the former country’s Energy Minister), around 80 percent of cooperation between the two countries comes from the energy sector, at an estimated volume of $450 million. If a third transmission is built and a hydroelectric power plant on Araks River, this will further connect the two countries which could also ultimately lead to the goal of establishing a “North – South” transport corridor.

Armenia and Energy Security

According to Sevak Sarukhanyan (Armenia’s Deputy Director of Noravank Foundation), “energy security is the most important issue for Armenia, as the country was probably the first state in CIS and the post-Soviet area to be hit by a severe energy crisis.” The two factors that basically led to this crisis were the closing of the Metasmor nuclear power plant in the late 1980s and the shifting of the country’s energy production to thermal power plants utilizing natural gas and fuel oil.

So it does seem today that there is much work to be done in terms of political and economic cohesion between Armenia and other BSEC countries, as well as Iran. At the end of the day – political affiliations and aspirations aside – most countries want the best for their citizens and that usually means working with neighboring countries to acquiesce the best investments.

*Established in 1992, the BSEC comprises Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine with Austria, Germany, Egypt, Israel, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Tunisia, France, the Confederation of European Energy Charter and the International Black Sea having observer status.