New trends in SOCAR strategy
Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan 10 /Trend/
Azer Ahmedbeyli, Trend analytical centre expert
Sometimes, not very noticeable events can lead to brilliant results. SOCAR, along with the German Development Agency of North Rhine Westphalia NRW.İNWEST GmbH and the cluster of new the nano-microfabrication, NanoMikro + Werkstoffe.NRW signed a Memorandum of Understanding which provides a division of the Research and Production Centre of SOCAR's Nanotechnology in North Rhine- Westphalia, as well as financing a technical and legal basis for joint projects such as the definition of the territory for the production of Nano-systems and the study of the market.
Cooperation between the parties will be focused on the organisation of sales and market study in the European Union and elsewhere. The memorandum also provides the implementation of joint projects in the EU on the basis of SOCAR nanotechnology.
It is not a trivial investment that SOCAR has made in its network of filling stations, which, of course, is also very important for the company, but is an expansion of markets for its products. It is a modern commercial approach of the 21st century and SOCAR has taken another step to get closer to the level of the most successful European oil companies.
According to Battelle and R & D Magazine forecasts, investing in research and development in the world will grow by 5.2 per cent in 2012, amounting to the sum of more than $1.4 trillion and the main engines of growth will be the Asian economies.
Expenses for research and development in some European countries (per cent of GDP):
2010 2011 2012 forecast
Germany 2,82 2,85 2,87
Russia 1,03 1,05 1,08
Switzerland 3 3 3
Turkey 0,85 0,9 0,9
Poland 0,68 0,72 0,72
Czech 1,53 1,55 1,55
Hungary 1,15 1,2 1,2
Romania 0,59 0,65 0,66
The share of expenditure on research and development in Azerbaijan in recent years is 0.2 per cent of the GDP (according to the Government Committee of Statistics of Azerbaijan). This proportion is three to four per cent in most developed countries.
Battelle experts believe international cooperation in this field to be one of the major trends in 2012.
Nano developments of Azerbaijani scientists made in recent years in the oil industry were highly regarded by international organisations. Their application has improved a number of processes associated with mining, drilling, petrochemical production quality and environmental standards.
The company has approved a NANONEFT programme planned for 2010-2015. Decisions on joint practical work with their German colleagues in the field of nanotechnology in the oil and gas industry is a new trend in the company's policy, which is marked not just by the desire to conquer sales markets and offer products of intellectual capital. It is a brand new level for SOCAR and Azerbaijan. The country is on the last slot on high technology export according to a report on global competitiveness of world economies.
Another new trend in the strategy of SOCAR is training future personnel. Recently, the company and the Texas A & M University agreed to cooperate in this area.
The head of SOCAR, met with the leaders of the world-renowned University of Texas A & M in Houston where he discussed the possibilities of future cooperation under the decree of the President of Azerbaijan on the establishment of a Baku oil high school as part of the company's structure. He said that SOCAR has implemented large-scale investment projects outside of Azerbaijan, particularly in Europe and noted that the company needs experts with up-to-date knowledge and having a high intellectual potential in order to take rightful place in international markets. Talks with the University of Aberdeen (Scotland) were also held. There is a curriculum being prepared at the school at the moment.
SOCAR Investment in research and development, as well as the creation of a strong human resource capacity will create conditions for a breakthrough of the company on a global scale.