Our participation in certain events does not mean that all relevant government decisions are in place and construction work has already started according to procedures. Economy Minister Vahan Kerobyan said this during RFE/RL Armenian Service’s Facebook interview – and referring to his participation in the start of the construction of a monumental statue of Jesus Christ on top of Mount Hatis in Armenia.
“This is an event about the start of a project, and there is no mention of construction. Naturally, this project has to go through all the procedures, and after receiving the approvals, it will enter the working phase.Of course, there is a lot of disposition both of the investor [i.e., Prosperous Armenia Party leader—and business tycoon—Gagik Tsarukyan], and the Prime Minister publicly endorsed this project during his speeches. But obviously none of us will implement projects by breaking the law. Everything will be done according to the procedure established by law,” assured the minister.
According to him, if this project materializes, there will be a very important tourist flow there.
“Mount Hatis is actually a wasteland. Expeditions take place [there]but there is little activity [there now] compared to what is expected. If the plan comes to fruition, there will be investments of tens, if not hundreds of millions of dollars there.
Investments in historical and cultural areas are not excluded, but there is a special procedure for making investments [there]; different departments must agree, the historical and cultural environment must not be disturbed,” he said.