Baku, Azerbaijan, April 13
On April 13, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev chaired the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers dedicated to the results of the country`s socio-economic development in the first quarter of 2014 and future tasks.
The Head of State addressed the meeting.
President Ilham Aliyev said the country maintained its rapid development rate in the first quarter of 2014, adding the economy grew 2.5%, and the Gross Domestic Product and the share of the non-oil sector in economy increased.
The President said measures were continued to diversify economy, and special attention was paid to solving social issues. The Head of State said the population`s bank deposits grew 20%, adding the average monthly salary saw a 7% rise, and currency reserves reached $53 million.
President Ilham Aliyev said the country`s main economic parameters were very positive, adding this allows looking forward with optimism.
The President said the population`s medical check-up program was successfully executed in this quarter, adding four million people underwent the check-up in two months. The Head of State stressed the importance of the third State program for socio-economic development of the country`s regions and the State program for socio-economic development of Baku and its suburbs.
The Head of State said measures were taken to develop entrepreneurship and improve business climate in the country in the first three months, adding there was an excellent investment environment in Azerbaijan, and the volume of domestic investment exceeded the size of foreign one.
The President said Azerbaijan`s foreign debt made 8% of the gross domestic product. President Ilham Aliyev said the country strengthened its positions in the world in the first quarter of the year. "Our foreign policy is open, principled and based on international law, justice," said the President, adding all this helped the country have earned great respect. The Head of State said he once again witnessed the importance attached to Azerbaijan during his foreign visits and the international events he attended, adding his meetings in a bilateral format were a success too.
On the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, President Ilham Aliyev said it was high time sanctions were imposed on Armenia. "Armenia occupied 20% of Azerbaijan`s lands, carried out ethnic cleansing policy, violated four resolutions of the UN Security Council, and committed the Khojaly genocide."
President Ilham Aliyev said measures were continued to create a strong army, adding the Azerbaijani army was supplied with modern weapons and armaments.
Minister of Taxes Fazil Mammadov, Energy Minister Natig Aliyev and Education Minister Mikayil Jabbarov highlighted what was done in the first quarter of 2014, and outlined further tasks.
President Ilham Aliyev made a closing speech at the meeting.
The Head of State instructed appropriate officials to continue work to execute social infrastructure projects, direct foreign investment to priority sectors, increase entrepreneurship support, and ensure food security.
The President said a new Order would be signed shortly with the aim of deepening agricultural reforms. The President hailed the execution of projects aimed at developing the non-oil sector and industry as a success.
President Ilham Aliyev said the new air terminal would soon be commissioned in the Heydar Aliyev International Airport.
The Head of State said measures would be continued to strengthen the army, adding infrastructure projects will be implemented, and the problems of Karabakh war disabled and veterans would be the focus of attention.
The President praised what was done in the oil and gas sector.
The Head of State stressed the importance of the environmental protection, saying the illegal cutting of trees had to be stopped.
President Ilham Aliyev said this year will see Azerbaijan enter the final stage of preparations for the inaugural European Games, noting the country aspired to organize the event in compliance with Summer Olympic Games standards.