Baku, Azerbaijan, June 12
By Ilkin Izzet - Trend:
The Baku 2015 European Games today announced BP as an official partner of next summer's spectacular and historic sporting event, according to a message from the company.
BP will become oil and gas partner for the European Games, in an agreement which will also see the company assist elite athlete development in Azerbaijan.
"As well as promoting Baku 2015 across Azerbaijan, BP will help fund the development of aspiring medal hopes for the host nation ahead of the European Games," BP said.
Azad Rahimov, Azerbaijan's Minister of Youth and Sports and Chief Executive of Baku European Games Operation Committee (BEGOC), said that BP is a company that has a long-standing presence in Azerbaijan and a deep understanding of the country.
"It has a history of supporting major international sports events around the world and we are delighted to be welcoming it as an official partner of the European Games," he said. "I am sure its support will help support the Games across Azerbaijan and Europe, and also help develop our athletes further in their pursuit of excellence."
BP employs over 3,250 people in Azerbaijan and will partner with BEGOC's innovative Games Academy initiative to help identify and develop professional talent in the country.
"We are delighted to be able to support Azerbaijan as it starts to prepare for such a grand sporting event," Ian Sutherland, BP's Regional Vice President for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, said.
"We believe this presents a unique opportunity for the country as it makes efforts to become a greater centre for sporting excellence," he added. "This is also a unique opportunity for hundreds of enthusiastic young Azerbaijani nationals to develop new skills and knowledge adding to the country's international events delivery capability."
He went on to add that BP is pleased to be supporting the Games Academy initiative which the company believes will enhance Azerbaijan's overall capability-building efforts and will leave a strong legacy of project delivery.
Simon Clegg, Baku 2015 Chief Operating Officer, said as a company, BP promotes values that are essential to sport such as respect, excellence and teamwork - and these are all values that are also important to Baku 2015.
"It recognises the European Games are an opportunity for a new generation to put Azerbaijan on the map of international sporting excellence, and its assistance with the development of Azerbaijani athletes is testament to that," he stressed.
"I am confident that together, Baku 2015 and BP will make a formidable partnership to engage and excite the nation as we continue to prepare for the inaugural European Games," Clegg added.
BP is one of the world's most renowned oil and gas suppliers, and is dedicated to safely developing and producing essential sources of energy.
In Azerbaijan, BP has safely and reliably operated five major oil and gas exploration, development and transportation projects.
Since 1994, it has invested together with its partners about $45 billion into projects in the country and has had a positive impact on local communities through its activities including extensive sustainable development initiatives.
Baku 2015 will be the first ever European Games, an exciting and innovative new multi-sport event for the continent that will take place from June 12 until June 28, 2015.
There will be a total of 19 sports at Baku 2015: 16 Olympic sports and three non-Olympic sports. More than 6,000 athletes are expected to represent their nations over the 17 days of competition.
Nine of the sports will offer qualification opportunities for the Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympics in 2016. Those sports include archery, athletics, beach volleyball, cycling, shooting, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo and triathlon.
Baku was awarded the Games by the European Olympic Committees (EOC) in December 2012. The Baku European Games Operations Committee (BEGOC) will organise and run the Games in co-operation with the EOC.