Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan.23
Azerbaijan has a special fund to support entrepreneurship, and through that fund, during the last decade, almost $2 billion was delivered to the private sector, the country's president, Ilham Aliyev said addressing the 'Strategic Outlook: Eurasia' panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Jan.23.
The president said the mentioned money was allocated to the private sector on a very preferential basis - low interest loans, with recommendations and state support.
"Especially, we pay attention to regional development. We are now implementing the third regional development program, which allowed us to create conditions for small enterprises to do business," he explained.
Further, the president spoke on the details.
"The conditions were - first, infrastructure. We built over 12,000 kilometers of roads in 15 years, including the village roads, which allow not only easy access to services, but also allow farmers to bring their products to markets," he said.
"The level of gas supply in Azerbaijan is 93 percent, taking into account the mountainous region, I think it is very high. Azerbaijan has transformed from electric energy importer, to exporter, we have extra capacity, extra source," President Aliyev said.
"Also, every year, around 100,000 hectares of land are irrigated by the state. Apart from that, our farmers do not pay any taxes, except for the land tax, and pay for only 30% of fertilizers and 50 percent of fuel," he said.
"So this is the substantial state support to business," the president said, also adding the subsidies for farmers and very good investment climate in the country.
"We attracted $230 billion worth of investments, half foreign, half local, in the last fifteen years," Ilham Aliyev said. "All this created conditions for the private sector to develop."
Azerbaijani president went on to say that the policy of support to the private sector will continue.
"The level of small enterprises in our GDP is still very low, therefore our main target for the coming years will be to create additional conditions for them, in order to generate jobs and more profit," he said.