On October 5, BP on behalf of its partners in the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG), Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC), Shah Deniz and South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP) projects re-launched the Enterprise Centre in Baku following its refurbishment and upgrade, Trend reports with reference to the statement of BP.
The Enterprise Centre is the focal point for BP's and its partners' efforts to maximize local content of their business in Azerbaijan. This will happen through increasing both the number of companies participating in their contracts, and the value of contracts awarded locally. To achieve this objective, the new Enterprise Centre will work closely with the country's leading companies, foreign investors and contractors, trade associations and other groups to support local enterprises and encourage their participation in BP contracts.
The Enterprise Centre was first established by BP and its partners in May 2002 in support of local small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) development. In its new role the Enterprise Centre will lead all initiatives aimed at meeting the ambitious target set by BP to double the value of contracts placed with Azerbaijan-owned companies within five years.
To reach this target, BP and its partners will implement plans to provide transparent sources of capital for local companies with potential to access the supply chain and a substantial enterprise development programme to help local companies gain further skills and knowledge. All these plans are also designed to encourage the non-oil sector and support enterprise development throughout Azerbaijan.
David Woodward, BP's President in Azerbaijan, said: Since the establishment of this facility BP and its partners have made a substantial contribution to the proactive development of Azerbaijan's economy, enhancing the country's long-term economic stability. We place a higher priority than ever before on SMEs, with the local enterprise development playing a central role. This year we expect to spend $1.6bn, in- country, with over 300 SMEs, over 50 state-owner companies, and more than 30 joint ventures that include Azerbaijani partners.
Our business will continue to grow through the continued development of ACG with oil exports ramping up to over one million barrels of oil a day and Shah Deniz gas production exceeding 8 bcma within the next few years. Given the scale of our business, we will continue to offer significant business opportunities for local companies in areas such as maintenance, minor engineering, logistics and many others. We are hopeful that many will grasp the opportunities we are offering, and in doing so create a strong, diverse and transparent enterprise culture on which a successful economy thrives.