BAKU, Azerbaijan, April 3. President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Italian Republic Edmondo Cirielli, Trend reports.
The head of state hailed the successful development of bilateral relations between Azerbaijan and Italy, stressed the importance of reciprocal visits in this regard, and described the visits of three Italian ministers to the country, including today`s trip of the deputy minister, since the beginning of the current year as a sign of the high level of bilateral ties.
Noting that relations between the two countries are developing at the level of strategic partnership, President Ilham Aliyev said that the ties are mostly related to the energy sector, and emphasized that the steps taken towards Europe's energy security strengthened Azerbaijan-Italy cooperation even further.
Recalling that Italy is also the first trade partner of Azerbaijan, the head of state said that the main part of the trade constitutes Azerbaijan's oil and gas export, and in this regard, stressed the importance of taking additional steps to expand the structure of the bilateral cooperation.
President Ilham Aliyev briefed the Italian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on normalization of the Armenia-Azerbaijan relations and peace agenda, and the proposals to sign a peace treaty Azerbaijan made shortly after the Second Karabakh war.
The Azerbaijani President expressed confidence that Edmondo Cirielli’s current visit would be productive.
Edmondo Cirielli said the thousands-years-old Azerbaijan-Italy relations can be traced back to ancient times. Saying that Azerbaijan is an important country for Italy, the Italian Deputy FM highlighted the country’s strategic significance in terms of stability in the South Caucasus, and underlined Azerbaijan’s pursuing an independent and sovereign policy in the region. In addition to political ties, Edmondo Cirielli also highlighted the special importance of economic cooperation.