Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych is grateful to his Azerbaijani Counterpart Ilham Aliyev for his attention to the development of the Ukraine- Azerbaijan cooperation in the fuel and energy sector. Yanukovych made this statement at the opening of the second meeting of the Azerbaijani and Ukrainian Presidents' Council in Kiev on Thursday, ITAR-TASS reported.
"I would like to thank you very much for the attention you pay to addressing the very complex inter-state issues and, above all, of course, the fuel and energy complex," Yanukovych said referring to Aliyev.
Noting that Azerbaijan occupies a very important position in the Caspian region, Yanukovych said Ukraine sees Azerbaijan as a reliable partner and friend. He noted that Ukraine and Azerbaijan and the peoples of the two countries historically had very close relations and expressed his hope that Aliyev's visit will help to strengthen them.
In turn, President Aliyev expressed his confidence in deepening of the Azerbaijan-Ukraine cooperation in the energy sector. "The issues that you have mentioned are of great importance for us and for our relations. Our countries have always addressed the issues related to fuel and energy in a spirit of friendship and constructivism. There are new ideas and opportunities to expand this cooperation at this stage," Aliyev said.
Aliyev expressed satisfaction with the positive influence of energy cooperation on the growth of the trade turnover between the two countries. "I hope that the issues to be discussed at today's meeting will play an important role in the development of the bilateral relations," he said.
"The political support that Ukraine and Azerbaijan provide to each other, including in the international arena, is very important," Aliyev said. "The cooperation in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea basins is impossible without the Ukraine- Azerbaijan cooperation."
Ukraine and Azerbaijan intend to sign soon a strategic cooperation plan for 2011-2015, First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Klyuyev said on Oct.7 following the eighth session of the Ukrainian-Azerbaijani intergovernmental commission for economic cooperation. According to Klyuyev, the plan will particularly cover the issues of cooperation in military technique and space industry, transport, heavy machinery, fuel and energy complex, agriculture and other sectors, including education and culture. Moreover, Ukraine and Azerbaijan intend to agree upon increasing the volume of the Caspian oil supplies to Ukraine soon.
President Aliyev reiterated Azerbaijan's readiness to cooperate with Ukraine in the field of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in an interview with Ukrainian media on the eve of his Kiev visit. He also expressed confidence that Azerbaijan could increase gas production to 40-50 billion cubic meters a year in a short time, if they sign contracts.
Ukraine intends to build its own LNG terminal on the Black Sea to reduce dependence on the Russian gas imports, and invited Azerbaijan to participate in this project.