Weekly actual topics in Azerbaijan (april 13-17)

Russia threatens buyers of Azerbaijani gas

Faced with Europe's desire to reduce the dependence on Russian gas, including the purchase of "blue fuel" from Azerbaijan, Moscow has passed to direct threats.

The Russian media reported that Gazprom has threatened those opposing the construction of the South Stream and Turkish Stream gas pipelines with termination of supplies.

In this case, Gazprom intends to build the South Stream pipeline and to stop gas supplies through Ukraine after 2019. Thus, Moscow intends to force buying its gas from this proposed southern direction.

Today, the Southern Gas Corridor project, initiated by Azerbaijan, is being implemented and it is several years ahead of the Turkish Stream. Some contracts for the purchase of gas have been already signed. It envisages gas supply from Azerbaijani Shah Deniz field through Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey to Europe. The advantage of this route compared to the Russian one is that the gas pipeline to Europe - TAP will be also constructed for it.

Russia is paying attention to volumes. The Turkish Stream envisages supplying about 50 billion cubic meters of gas to the southern borders of Europe, whereas 10 billion cubic meters will be supplied through the Southern Gas Corridor at the first stage, so sttracting other suppliers to the Southern Gas Corridor becomes more relevant in this situation.

Contractors from other fields of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan can be these suppliers. One must not exclude the supplies of Iranian and Iraqi gas via this route in the future. However, the EU is primarily responsible for solving all these questions. Russia threatens it now. Brussels must be most interested in attracting new suppliers to the Southern Gas Corridor.

Knowing that the Southern Gas Corridor may be a direct alternative to Russian supplies in the future and that Russia will fail to leave its implementation behind, Moscow is actually directly threatening the buyers of Azerbaijani gas as many countries covered by the Turkish Stream are the future buyers of gas from Azerbaijan.

Earlier, the resistance was carried out at the level of attempted influence via politicians sympathetic to Moscow, such as the new Greek government, then, achieving no result, Russia started to threaten. At the same time, feeling the tension in relations between Brussels and Athens, faced with serious economic problems, Moscow wants to further strengthen this divide. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras's recent visit to Russia can be cited as an example.

The effect of Moscow's threats is directly dependent on the EU. If the EU is able to consolidate and develop a consensus concerning the problem and as a result - a unified system of resistance, it will be able to resist gas dependence on Russia. Otherwise, as Gazprom head said, Russia is ready to build the Turkish Stream first and then wait for the construction of the infrastructure in Europe. This will allow Gazprom to "hold a pause" if it is forced. In fact, Russia intends to worry Europe into doing this.

Azerbaijan strengthens investment fight

The political map of the world has been recently changed. The global financial crisis, the conflict in Ukraine and the subsequent Western sanctions on Russia, retaliatory sanctions of the Russian Federation and the fall in oil prices - all this was the reason of searching for alternative markets and new sources of profit.

In these conditions, the Western countries often turn to the East, which proved to be more resilient to the external shocks than Europe.

Azerbaijan is not a traditional eastern country. It is located at the crossroads of East and West. That's why, such countries as Azerbaijan, has been recently seen as promising markets for investments.

For example, such a project as the construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK), which will connect Europe and Asia, will allow opening a cheaper transport corridor. Thus, it is appropriate to speak not only about the investments, for example in joint ventures, but also the possibility of smooth delivery of goods to the markets of the third countries.

Every year Azerbaijan improves the conditions for attracting foreign investors. The new industrial, chemical-industrial and agrarian parks, high-tech parks are operating and are being established in the country. The investors wishing to work in these parks are provided with the tax and customs privileges. This allows them to reduce the production costs.

It is not surprising that foreign investments in the country are growing from year to year. They increased by 47 percent up to 1.5 billion manat in the first quarter of 2015 compared to the same period of 2014. For comparison, the investments in the first quarter of 2014 increased by almost 10 percent compared to the same period of 2013. This fact clearly demonstrates great attractiveness of the Azerbaijani market for foreign investments. In general, about 45 percent of all investments in fixed capital have been attracted from abroad since the beginning of the year.

But this is not the limit. Five business forums with the participation of businessmen from Belgium, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Russia, the Netherlands are expected to be held in Baku for 20-30 days. The Azerbaijani businessmen are expected to visit Hungary and the Netherlands. Moreover, they have recently had meetings with businessmen from Singapore, Italy and Serbia.

If Russia and Italy are long-term strategic and trade partners of Azerbaijan with a total turnover of around $7 billion (an index as of 2014), the foreign trade turnover with the rest of these countries during the same period amounted to about $ 600 million.

Therefore we can say that Azerbaijan is new, still unexplored market for these countries. But it is clear that Azerbaijan can cooperate with these countries on a number of areas, namely, agriculture, ICT sector, industry, including petrochemical industry.

Azerbaijan pays special attention to the development of non-oil sector, focusing on the establishment of high-tech production. Therefore, the country is looking for not only new financial but also human resources. The certain activity is conducted in this area. The procedure for obtaining a work permit in the country and so on is being simplified. But we must understand that this is the case when demand creates supply because the number of foreign workers wishing to work in Azerbaijan exceeds the country's quota.

So it would be more appropriate to speak not only of great interest in Azerbaijan as a country with a favorable investment climate, but also good opportunities for work.

While talking about investment, it is worth noting that the matter rests in the mutual investments. Azerbaijan has recently begun to actively seek new sales and investment markets. The devaluation of the manat (February 21) played a positive role in this regard. It has allowed domestic producers to reduce production costs in the country. This makes the Azerbaijani products more competitive on the foreign markets.

Azersun Holding director general Savas Uzan also said that the devaluation would open up new opportunities for local entrepreneurs. He said that the decline in domestic spending allowed the products produced on the holding enterprises to be delivered to the European market.

Most likely, an example of the holding will not be the last one. Many local companies will be able to expand their presence in other countries.

During such a difficult period for the global policy and economy, Azerbaijan has a unique opportunity to establish close ties with the new countries, by developing its economy and expanding influence in the world.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
Iran ready for resultative talks on nuclear deal - top diplomat
Iran ready for resultative talks on nuclear deal - top diplomat
Iranian President talks about nuclear discussions
Iranian President talks about nuclear discussions
Decision makers in Iran realize going forward without JCPOA is wrong - analyst
Decision makers in Iran realize going forward without JCPOA is wrong - analyst
Loading Bars
Azerbaijan’s Central Bank talks dev’t strategy for securities market until 2023
Pfizer Shot Provides Partial Omicron Shield in Early Study
Australia joins diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Games
704 new COVID-19 cases reported in Kazakhstan
France reports record daily COVID-19 count
U.S. Senate backs $650 million missile sale to Saudi Arabia
Mandatory vaccination should be a last resort, says WHO Europe chief
Bolsonaro dismisses vaccination requirement for entry into Brazil
Israel announces completion of high-tech barrier around Gaza
Northern Ireland reports first Omicron cases
Police officer killed in NW Pakistan's firing
Sweden to reintroduce many COVID-19 measures as cases rise
Armenia has no choice but to open Zangazur corridor - experts
Turkey, Qatar strengthen bilateral ties with 15 new deals
Georgian parliamentary delegation visits Washington
Chinese company plans to build a technopark and solar power plant in Uzbekistan
WHO donates 260k packs of intravenous solutions to Iran
Cost of cargo transported via trains up in Azerbaijan
International Court of Justice grants Azerbaijan's request for temporary measures against Armenia
Western media shows neutral approach to Azerbaijan’s Zangazur corridor - Head of Trend News Agency’s Foreign Projects Directorate
Azerbaijan donates 100,000 doses of Sinovac vaccine against COVID-19 to Burkina Faso (PHOTO)
Information spread in Armenian media about killing of illegal militant on territory of Azerbaijan is baseless – MoD
Azerbaijani MFA comments on statement of Armenian foreign ministry
International Court of Justice urges Armenia to take urgent measures against groups and individuals making violent calls on ethnic grounds
International Court of Justice refused to secure Armenia's claim for immediate return of so-called POWs
Azerbaijan completes over half of construction of Barda-Aghdam highway
Azerbaijan building new high-speed road in Shusha city
Azerbaijan-Iran plan to build new bridge to increase traffic
Iran Securities and Exchange Organization focusing on strengthening Capital Market Stabilization Fund
Iran looks to expand agricultural ties with Romania
EIB, EBRD touch on Georgia’s economic growth
Price indexes of industrial, trade sectors at Uzbek stock exchange fall
Georgia shortens terms of COVID-19 booster vaccination
Azerbaijan shares data on 10M2021 oil exports to Vietnam
Uzbekistan shares stats on export of textile products for 10M2021
Kazakhstan's KMG talks project of new gas processing plant in Mangistau
Iran's Bahar Azadi gold coin price increases
Azerbaijan sees decrease in import of vehicles, spare parts over 10M2021
Volume of loaded/unloaded cargo in Iran’s Qeshm port up
Value of Azerbaijan's export to Turkmenistan up for 10M2021
Azerbaijan’s energy ministry opens tender to buy technical support services
Azerbaijan-Iran to take steps to increase trade turnover – Iranian ambassador
Shootout occurs on border between Azerbaijan and Iran - offender neutralized
Baku Int'l Sea Trade Port reveals details of dev’t strategy until 2035
First harvest gathered in mushroom greenhouse in Turkmenistan’s Mary region
Azerbaijan-Iran implementing agreements on joint cooperation – ambassador
Germany's next finance minister stresses price stability
SOFAZ shares estimates of budget revenues for 2022
Iran opens office for cargo barter with Pakistan
Number of legal entities restoring activity in Azerbaijan slightly increases in 11M2021
President Ilham Aliyev receives President for Exploration and Production of TotalEnergies (VIDEO)
Indian embassy in Baku holds webinar on electronic and computer hardware/software products (PHOTO)
Sport in Azerbaijan - integral part of state policy, deputy minister says
Bank of Israel bought $4 bln of FX in Nov, hits $34 bln in 2021
India's Rajnath Singh attends maiden 2+2 Dialogue with Russia
Less urgent need to rebuild stocks to weigh on coal demand
Omicron poses a major risk to global oil demand
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Azerbaijan confirms 1,530 more COVID-19 cases, 1,864 recoveries
Azerbaijan, Russia’s Astrakhan sign action program to develop co-op (PHOTO)
Georgia shares data on cigarettes turnover in 10M2021
President Ilham Aliyev signs order appointing new chairman of State Insurance Commerce Company
Georgia’s imports of fuel and lubricants from Kazakhstan plummet
EU health bodies recommend mix-and-match of COVID-19 vaccines
Georgian apple exports on rise
Number of taxpayers increases in Azerbaijan over 11M2021
Kazakhstan increases volume of production of crude oil and oil products
Kazakhstan shares data on coal production
Turkmenistan becomes top oil exporter to Georgia
Armenia should fulfill requirements of documents signed after Second Karabakh War – Turkish official
Google Pay begins operating in Israel
Volume of electricity production in Uzbekistan for 10M2021 unveiled
Azerbaijan records growth in cost of air cargo transport for 10M2021
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for December 7
Central Bank of Azerbaijan reveals amount of foreign currency sold via auction
Non-oil exports in Azerbaijan to reach record high – minister
Opening of Azerbaijan’s Zangazur corridor may reduce transportation time from China to Europe
Azerbaijan to auction several mineral deposits
Epsilon obtains industrial gas inflow from new well at field in Uzbekistan
bp to develop best barrels, make portfolio higher value, says CEO
Azerbaijani State Tourism Agency talks about prices for air tickets (Exclusive)
Iran’s IMPASCO aims to transfer shares of some mining complexes to private sector
bp going to invest 10 times more in low carbon by 2030 - Bernard Looney
What does gas swap deal between Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Iran promise?
Baku Stock Exchange talks priorities in trade turnover until 2023
Turkey, Iran trade turnover grows in October 2021
Georgia shares top importers of its hazelnuts
bp achieves increase in productivity in Azerbaijan with new agile organizational structure
Russia’s new daily coronavirus cases below 32,000 for first time since October 14
Iran pins big hopes on gas swap contract, aims for European exports in near future, says ambassador (Exclusive)
Turkmen agriculture ministry opens tender for purchase of veterinary vaccines
Iran eyes increase in flights via Rasht International Airport
Kazakh oilfield construction company opens tender to buy pipes
Kazakhstan eyes diversifying trade flows with ECO countries
Azerbaijan’s Baku Int’l Sea Trade Port expects increase in flow of goods
Georgia’s spice exports to Central Asia down
Uzbekistan reveals volume of exports and imports for 10M2021
Volume of foreign trade turnover increases in Uzbekistan
Kazakhstan sees multifold decrease in trade with South Korea
Eurostat discloses Azerbaijan’s petroleum exports to Italy
All news