In accordance with a Decree issued by the Government of the Republic of Armenia on 17 January 2008, Russian Railways was recognised as the winner of a tender for the management of the Republic of Armenia's railway system.
On 13 February 2008, a Concession Agreement was signed between the Ministry of Transport and Communication of the Republic of Armenia, South Caucasus Railways and Russian Railways on the transfer of the railway system of the Republic of Armenia to CJSC South Caucasus Railways, which was established by Russian Railways and which acts as a guarantor of the obligations to invest railway transport facilities and objects of the Republic of Armenia.
CJSC South Caucasus Railways began operational activities on 1 June 2008.
CJSC South Caucasus Railways operates on the territory of the Republic of Armenia as an economic entity with strategic goals and objectives regarding the development of the nationwide transportation system, the achievement of stable rail transport operations in Armenia, the satisfaction of the needs of the Armenian economy with regard to quality transportation of passengers and freight, and the creation of the necessary conditions for integrating the republic into the Eurasian transportation system.
The term of the Concession Agreement is 30 years. It can be extended for another 10 years by mutual consent of the parties.
The volume of investments under the contract for the period 2008 - 2038 amounts to 174,559.9 million drams at the current exchange rate of the Central Bank of Armenia at the time the agreement was signed, which as of 2008 corresponded to approximately 15 billion roubles.
Within the framework of concessionary activities, a large-scale modernisation of the infrastructure and the renewal of the rolling stock fleet are ensured.
the following objects were repaired:
- 7 km of track;
- 342 km of the contact network;
- 52 level crossings;
- 48 substations;
- 38 bridges and other objects.
the following objects were repaired and their service life extend:
- 700 freight wagons;
- 27 passenger carriages;
- 18 VL-10 electric locomotives;
- 3 ChME3 diesel locomotives.
the following objects were acquired:
- 60 units of motorised wagons and carriages;
- 35 units of track maintenance vehicles;
- 10 ChME3 diesel locomotives;
- 8 VL-10 electric locomotives.