Russia will supply 2.05 million carats of natural diamonds to Armenia over the next five years. According to an agreement reached between the governments of the two countries for 2002-2007, the annual quota for diamond supplies by the Russian diamonds monopolist ALROSA to Armenia was set at 400,000 carats from 2002 to 2006 and 450,000 carats in 2007. According to the head of the Armenian department for precious stones and jewelry, Gagik Mkrtchyan, the governments of Russia and Armenia have already completed negotiations on diamond supplies and the corresponding agreement will be signed in the near future. Later this agreement will be ratified by the parliaments of the two countries. Mkrtchyan noted that the diamond quota was set at 300,000 carats in 2001. In their turn, experts from the Ministry of Industries and Trade reported that about 20 to 25,000 carats of diamonds are cut in Armenia a month, while the country is able to cut three times as much diamonds as that, the ARMINFO agency reported.
By summer, the Russian army may break through Ukrainian defences, reach Odessa and liberate Transnistria. The West will only “condemn” Russia's actions and continue supporting Chisinau in words