BAKU, Azerbaijan, September 30. Azerbaijan holds an important role in achieving the goal of regional stability and development, CEO at Romania's Smartlink Communications consulting company, analyst, consultant, and think tanker Radu Magdin told Trend.
According to Magdin, the recent ceasefire agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia was welcomed by international actors, especially the European Union (EU), which remains strongly involved in the process of normalizing Azerbaijan-Armenia relations, including at the highest level through President of the European Council Charles Michel.
“Azerbaijan has the opportunity to design policies and international international engagement focused on bringing economic prosperity to all, high-quality social protection and social measures that would allow for development in the future. A strong focus on internal development, combined with the opportunities brought by rapprochement with the EU, especially at a time in which the international community is facing multiple challenges, can provide improved perspectives for Azerbaijan and the entire region in terms of energy transport infrastructure, energy commodities trade development involving Europe and Central Asia, opening up the very region to the external aid and investments to improve region stability and welfare,” said Magdin.
He noted that Europe’s energy security is a major priority in the context of EU member states’ efforts to cease dependence on Russian energy resources and identify alternatives that are viable from both a political and an economic standpoint.
“The agreement between the EU and Azerbaijan envisages a substantial increase in the annual volume of gas exported in the next five years, from around 2.5 percent of the EU’s gas consumption now, to around 5 percent by 2027. Azerbaijan is already enjoying a significant profile as a long-term partner for the purpose of building a new European architecture in the energy field, but opportunities also lie in other areas of in-depth and comprehensive free trade, in which Azerbaijan would have direct benefits from access to a single market of almost 450 million consumers. Additionally, the region could benefit as the energy transportation hub for the energy commodities from Central Asia to Europe and beyond thus increasing region prosperity and stability perspectives,” he added.
Magdin also emphasized that peace in the EU’s neighborhood is extremely important.