Armenia: Dozens of greenhouses can not pay their gas debts
Gas price was increased by 18% in July 2013, and this affected the greenhouse owners in winter 2013-2014. The noticeable increase in gas bills was to be compensated by keeping the production prices up. However, the price rise was not an option in a competitive environment of Turkish cucumbers and tomatoes. As a result, the profit reaped from the sales of crops was not sufficient to cover the gas loan.
Due to high gas prices, many greenhouse owners had to reduce the amount of gas used and thus sacrifice the yields.
Failure to pay the debt, gas can be cut off in the middle of winter. In this case the greenhouse workers have to reseed the crops in March, so that they ripe by summer. In summer, however, they are much cheaper, what makes it hard to pay the loans.
Consequently, many greenhouses face shutdown. Some of them can not afford a new planting stock, others can become subject to bank lien.