Official: Azerbaijan ensured national security, stability in 2015
Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 29,
Azerbaijani president's aide for public and political affairs, Ali Hasanov said the country protected itself against complex global processes and continued its development in 2015 as he highlighted the results of the year in an interview.
"The year 2015 was of vital importance as the tasks facing the government and society of Azerbaijan have been fulfilled, and foreign policy issues have been addressed," he said.
"We maintained the rate of economic growth, continued the execution of economic and social programs, implementation of huge transnational energy and transportation projects, and measures to improve people's social well-being," noted Hasanov. "Azerbaijan has considerably strengthened its international standing, and ensured national security and stability."
"Thanks to President Ilham Aliyev's independent, well thought-out and flexible policy the country has protected itself against complex global processes and continued its development," he stressed.
The presidential aide also commented on the November 1 parliamentary election in the country.
"The election to the Milli Majlis (parliament) was one of the remarkable events in the socio-political life of the country. The election was held in a democratic atmosphere and reflected the will of the people of Azerbaijan," he added.
Hasanov recalled that a total of 1,246 people were registered as parliamentary candidates, with 767 participating in the election.
"More than 40 foreign missions, totaling over 500 people, tens of thousands of local observers, local and foreign media representatives and experts monitored the voting," he said. "According to them, the election was transparent, fair, and saw tough competition."
Hasanov also highlighted the country's economic development.
"According to statistics, Azerbaijan's economy grew 3.1 percent in 11 months of the year, while the gross domestic product made $50 billion. What is important is that this growth was possible thanks to the non-oil sector," he said.
The official went on to add that in 2015, the non-oil economy grew more than four percent, accounting for 70 percent of the national economy.
"The industrial output increased 2.1 percent, while the non-oil industry saw a 7.7 percent growth," he added. "A total of $20 billion were invested in the country's economy, including 11 billion of foreign investment. A total of 87,000 jobs were opened, with the total number of jobs created since 2004 exceeding 1.4 million," he noted.
The presidential aide further highlighted the importance of the first European Games that Azerbaijan hosted this year.
"The fact that the history of the European Games started in Azerbaijan is a landmark event. Never before had the county hosted a sports event of such a scale. Suffice it to say that a total of nearly 6,000 athletes from 50 countries competed in the Games. This was Europe's first-ever own Games," he said.
Hasanov added that the Baku 2015 Games were magnificent, grandiose - everything from the opening to closing ceremony was excellently organized.
He also provided an insight into international events hosted by Azerbaijan.
Hasanov particularly spoke about the 48th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank, the 12th Session of the General Conference of the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO).
He also hailed the importance of Azerbaijan's attending the G20 Summit in the Turkish city of Antalya.
Further speaking about the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the presidential aide expressed regret that "there hasn't been any tangible progress on the problem this year."
He blamed Armenia's non-constructive position and the OSCE Minsk Group's irresolute position for the delay in the conflict settlement.