Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 16 / Trend S. Agayeva /
"Moldova is clearly aware of Azerbaijan's increasing role as an exporter of energy resources to European countries. Like any other European country, it is also interested in diversifying energy supply sources and ensuring its energy security. In this sense, I see the possibility of implementing various beneficial projects," Moldovan Prime Minister Vladimir Filat said in an interview with Trend on the eve of his official visit to Azerbaijan.
"Clearly, these issues will be one of the key ones during my meetings with the Azerbaijani leadership," the minister said. The visit is scheduled for January 17-19.
He said that there are a number of issues in various areas of cooperation that require discussion. They will be raised during the scheduled meetings in Baku.
"In particular, those relating to joint actions to strengthen and develop the political dialogue between our countries will be raised," he said. "Undoubtedly, the Azerbaijani President's visit to Moldova would be a major step in this direction. I intend to discuss this issue during my meeting with President Aliyev."
The Moldovan speaker also highlighted the bilateral contacts at the inter-ministerial level. "I am convinced that the relevant ministries of our countries have much to discuss.
"Unfortunately, the potential for bilateral cooperation is not fully utilised today. This obliges us to constantly hold discussions and consultations," he said.
He said that the interaction between Moldova and Azerbaijan within international and regional organisations will be also discussed.
It is planned to discuss the issues relating to the settlement of the so-called 'frozen conflicts' during the meetings in Baku - Transnistria and Nagorno-Karabakh.
"Regarding economic cooperation, I would like to emphasise the need for coordinated actions to strengthen and intensify trade and economic relations," he said. "Unfortunately, we did not have significant positive changes in this area. Therefore, the main task is to find mutually acceptable and beneficial ways of solving the existing problematic issues and removing the existing barriers."
Filat said that the aspects related to the next meeting of the Moldovan-Azerbaijani Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation will be discussed soon. Unfortunately, it has not been carried out since February 2007 due to various reasons.
Filat said that the economy is a priority area of interstate cooperation between the countries. "Moldova and Azerbaijan have good prospects for an effective, productive and mutually beneficial cooperation in such important areas as energy sector, bilateral trade and investments, agro-industrial complex and transport sector," he said.
Filat said that a mutual investment activity and participation in profitable economic projects are at low level. "At present, the Moldovan legislation, investment attractiveness and activity of free economic zones have been estimated by foreign investors," he said. "In this regard, we look forward to more active actions from the Azerbaijani business to develop the Moldovan market."
One of the key principles of successful cooperation with investors is an attractive investment climate and improved legislation in this area, he said. "Moldova seeks to create the necessary conditions and succeeded in many areas," he said. "Therefore, using this opportunity, I want to invite Azerbaijani potential investors to familiarize with the opportunities offered by our country. In this regard, such spheres of the Moldovan economy as agribusiness, energy, transport infrastructure, light industry and tourism may be of interest."