Trend exclusive interview with Hewlett Packard General Director for Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Hilmar Lorentz
Question: How do you estimate the state of IT-market in Azerbaijan?
Answer: I appraise the situation of IT sector in Azerbaijan. There is a favorable climate for the development of information-communications technologies in Azerbaijan. It is particularly based on the fact that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev set the development of this sector in Azerbaijan as the key task. I think, there is a good team in the Azerbaijani Ministry for communications and information Technologies, which fulfils its duties in the right way. We periodically hold meetings at the Ministry of communications information Technologies and both sides are very interested in cooperation.
These factors are very essential. Nothing can be done, or solved by itself. Assistance and skills are needed to implement the adopted resolutions.
Question: Active preparations for the establishment of regional innovation zone are underway in Azerbaijan. Does HP have any plans in this connection?
Answer: Right, we are interested in participation in this project and carry out discussions with the Government in this respect. We have recently had a meeting with the Azerbaijani Minister for communications and information Technologies, Ali Abbasov, and discussed our participation in the project. Probably, the Company will be involved in this project, especially, as a trainer of highly qualified specialists in IT sector. The establishment of such zone is an essential milestone for the development of this sector in Azerbaijan from the aspect of concentration of efforts and skills in the sphere of high technologies.
Question: In what spheres is HP interested the most to carry out work in Azerbaijan?
In Azerbaijan HP is interested in the spheres of E-government, finances and education. Let me reveal you a small secret: we had an internal competition whether who will first implement jointly with HP a pilot project of the Azerbaijani Education Ministry on provision of opportunities for parents to know about their children progress at school and attendance through hi-tech.
It is one of the major elements of our presence here. Azerbaijan will apply for the first time. On the eve of the project we had a meeting with the Education Minister Misir Mardanov, who marked that everyone in the country should know about the implementation of such project.
These steps testify HP positive work in different sphere of Azerbaijan public and economic life. In future we intend to intensify this strategy.
Question: Which market do you regard as most developed in CIS over the past 10 years?
Answer: It is a very difficult question. It is impossible to give an exact answer without conduct of analysis of different segments of markets in CIS countries. CIS market seems to have an essential element, which causes progress everywhere. Naturally, there is a difference among these countries, as some of them have oil, while others do not.
For instance, it would not be right to compare Azerbaijan and Mongolia, which have a tremendous difference. On the other hand, our objective is to achieve excellent result irrespective of the country.
Question: What is HP major strategy in CIS, including Azerbaijan?
Answer: Business has face. Our team's key task is to understand that we are working in the CIS countries, but no where else. It is necessary to consider the issue not formally, but try to establish better relationships among the customers and partners. Obviously, we understand that there is a task and there is time, during which we should deliver products, spare parts, and apply innovations. It is rather difficult than to implement the similar work in my native land - Germany.