Last week review (May 11-15)

Analysis Materials 18 May 2015 17:53 (UTC +04:00)

May 12

Tunnel opened on Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway - deputy minister

A tunnel, located between the Georgian and Turkish border, has been opened on the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, Azerbaijani Deputy Transport Minister Musa Panahov said.

He made the remarks at the opening ceremony of the 14th International Transport, Transit and Logistics Exhibition and 5th Anniversary Caspian International Road Infrastructure and Public Transport Exhibition.

"This is an important step towards the realization of the project, because construction of the tunnel was the most difficult section," said the deputy minister.

The length of the tunnel is 79 kilometers.

SOCAR, Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges sign strategic partnership agreement

The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan and the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey signed a strategic partnership agreement in Baku.

In accordance with the document, SOCAR will become an official partner and gold sponsor of regional consultation forums in B20 Turkey format that will be held in various cities of the world. The cost of the agreement was not revealed.

May 13

Azerbaijan signs contract to buy Swiss double-decker trains

Azerbaijan Railways CJSC and Switzerland's Stadler Rail Group signed a contract in Baku on the purchase of five KISS double-decker trains.

The Azerbaijan Railways CJSC Chairman Javid Gurbanov and the Stadler Rail Group CEO Peter Spuhler signed the contract.

Gurbanov said the contract is worth about 60-70 million euros, which are to be paid to Stadler Rail Group in 20 years with help of the revenues from passenger transportations.

Each train consists of four cars. The passenger capacity of each train is 919 people and there are 396 seats in each train, 84 of which are business class seats.

May 14

CBA bought from the market about 60% of mortgage bonds

The central bank of Azerbaijan has purchased about 60% of AMF's bonds from their holders, as the capital market was distressed following the devaluation of the manat in February 2015.

This was affirmed by Fitch Ratings in a message about long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) at 'BBB-' with the "Stable" forecast.

"This shows the willingness of the Central Bank to support the fund, if necessary. Fitch expects that the fund will continue to receive support from the Central Bank," the report says. According to the agency, in the medium term, the annual contributions from the state in the AIF may rise significantly, but it will depend on the decision of the state to expand the program of social housing construction in Azerbaijan.

Baku to host Azerbaijani-Vietnamese business forum

The Azerbaijani-Vietnamese business forum will be held as part of the visit of a delegation headed by President of Vietnam Truong Tan Sang to Baku.

The representatives of about 40 Vietnamese companies will attend the forum organized by the Ministry of Economy and Industry of Azerbaijan.

Inflation in Azerbaijan unaffected by decrease of manat rate

Despite the decrease in the exchange rate of Azerbaijani manat, the inflation in the country remained at the acceptable level, said the Head of the Monetary Policy Department of Azerbaijani Central Bank Azer Alasgarov. Alasgarov made the remarks during the conference "G20: Priorities of Turkey's chairmanship and the new opportunities for economic cooperation of Azerbaijan". Alasgarov said that the exchange rate policy of the Central Bank allowed to neutralize the strengthening of the exchange rate of manat that has been observed in recent years.

May 15

Saudi Arabia aims to increase trade turnover with Azerbaijan

Saudi Arabia is interested in increasing the trade turnover with Azerbaijan, Minister of Commerce and Industry of Saudi Arabia Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al Rabiah said at the Azerbaijani-Saudi Arabian business forum in Baku.

"Although Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia signed the intergovernmental agreements on elimination of double taxation and protection of investments, the trade turnover between our countries is at a very low level and we are here to fix the situation," he said.

The business forum is supported by the Ministry of Economy and Industry of Azerbaijan. It brings together the representatives of over 100 companies of Saudi Arabia.