Ilham Aliyev: In terms of road infrastructure, Azerbaijan holds a leading place on world scale (UPDATE)

Headline changed, details added (first version posted on Aug. 19 at 18:54)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 19


Great attention is being paid to road projects in Azerbaijan, President Ilham Aliyev said in Samukh District as he addressed the opening of the Samukh-Fuzuli-Lak-Alibayramli-Garabaghlar-Chobanabdalli-Samukh highway.

“I am very glad to come to Samukh and see you,” he said. “This is my third trip to Samukh District as President. Very important opening ceremonies are to be held as part of this visit. One of them is a rural road project. For many years, this road was a major problem for people of these villages. There was no bridge and it was difficult to move around during mudflows.”

“A beautiful 36-km road has now been laid,” he noted. “This is a ring road linking 11 settlements. This road will give you comfort. At the same time, this road is of great importance for the development of agriculture. The government allocated major funds for the construction of this road. This is a purely social project because the construction of this road is primarily meant to ease the movement of people. From now on, there will be no problems associated with this road. These 11 villages are home to more than 20,000 people. I congratulate you on this wonderful occasion.”

“I should also note that a second road project was opened today,” Ilham Aliyev said. “It is the Zazali-Imamzade road. It covers five villages of Samukh District. Thus, a road to 16 villages of Samukh District has been built and put into operation today. This is a very significant event indeed. Where there is a road, there is development.”

He added that investments and development of agriculture are both associated with the road infrastructure.

“Roads serve the people and facilitate their movement. At the same time, your products are delivered to the market more quickly and without losses. Roads create additional opportunities for farming,” Ilham Aliyev said. “Therefore, roads are both a social and an economic project.”

“It is possible to say that all our main roads have been built at the most modern level. A beautiful four-lane road has been laid from Baku to Ganja. There is a two-lane road from Ganja to the border with Georgia, which is also good. We are thinking of expanding it to four lanes.”

“Major funds are invested in highways, intercity roads in southern and northern directions, and rural roads,” he added. “We are doing this for people to take advantage of these opportunities.”

“This year, roads are being laid to hundreds of villages in our country,” Ilham Aliyev said. “The conditional name of this project is "Forty Roads". It consists of 40 projects, but each project covers several villages. For example, one project covers 11 villages and another five. In other words, the "Forty Roads" project covers hundreds of villages during a year. Next year we will cover even more villages. Thus, there shouldn’t be a single unrepaired rural road in our country. Projects of the main roads are almost over. Most of the intercity roads have been built. Roads are now laid among villages. In terms of the road infrastructure, Azerbaijan is currently in one of the leading places on a world scale.”

“Today, I also attended the opening of the first stage of the Shamkir-Samukh-Goranboy water canal,” the Azerbaijani president noted. “This project is also of great importance for Samukh and neighboring districts. According to the information provided to me, citizens are able to cultivate thousands of hectares of land due to the implementation of this project. Water supply of 12,000 hectares of land has been improved. The lands which have not been irrigated before are provided with water now. This, of course, has given a great impetus to the development of agriculture.”

“Great work is being done on lands that were not cultivated earlier,” he added. “I am told that there is no vacant land. Why? Because there is water! When there is no water, no one grows anything. We have done a lot to build water lines. The Shamkirchay water reservoir has been built. This is a historic project. We put it into operation a few years ago. Hundreds of millions of manats were invested in this project. According to preliminary estimates, this project envisaged to provide and improve water supply of approximately 70,000-80,000 hectares of land.”

“According to the latest update, the construction of additional canals will bring this figure to 110,000 hectares. Therefore, a canal has been laid from Shamkir to Samukh. I have just opened it. The construction of this canal will be continued and cover the territory of Goranboy and Goygol districts. Thus, irrigation is now provided to more than 100,000 hectares of land. Peasants, farmers and entrepreneurs use this water immediately, plant, cultivate, produce and earn good money. This is also a great contribution to our food security.”

“Agriculture is a priority sector for us,” Ilham Aliyev said. “We have opened a regional seed, agrochemical and veterinary laboratory in Goygol District today. The laboratory covering Samukh District is also of great importance. A center for artificial insemination has been opened. This will make a great contribution to the development of livestock breeding.”

“In other words, there is rapid development of agriculture, and water projects are the first precondition,” he noted. “We are providing that. I am sure that things will go well in Samukh District in the future. Socioeconomic projects have been implemented to date. According to the information provided to me, more than 30 schools have been built and refurbished. Electricity supply has been improved. Gas supply in Samukh has reached 83 percent. It is also necessary to implement a drinking water project. We will also implement the Samukh drinking water project at our own expense. Relevant instructions have been issued today. I know that this is a problem in Samukh. The drinking water project should also be implemented soon.”

“Thus, as a result of infrastructure, agricultural and irrigation projects, social facilities and new jobs, the all-round development of the district will be ensured,” he added. “There is rapid development of agriculture now, which is why there are no job-seekers in the countryside. In other words, whoever wants to work will find a job. The amount of funds paid to people is also growing now. Whereas people agreed to a certain amount earlier, a larger figure is required now. And this is good. The more money people make, the better.”

“Entrepreneurs will earn money anyway,” Ilham Aliyev said. “If they do not earn, they will not work. All the conditions have been created for them – there is state support, loans, projects like this, water projects. Therefore, the main issue is that the hired rural residents should receive a good salary and their daily wages should fully meet their needs. We see that there is tremendous growth in this field too. The development of agriculture has gained so much momentum that the number of those who want to engage in this branch is growing. And we are creating these conditions. This road, the water canal and other projects are a visual embodiment of this.”

“I congratulate you on this remarkable event and wish you continued success,” Ilham Aliyev added. “Thank you.”

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