Weekly economic review (Nov. 27-Dec. 1)

MP talks introduction of mandatory health insurance throughout Azerbaijan

Introduction of mandatory health insurance throughout Azerbaijan may start in 2019, MP Musa Guliyev told reporters in Baku.

Experience of foreign countries shows that it usually takes several years to fully introduce mandatory health insurance, said Guliyev.

“I believe the first year of introduction of mandatory health insurance in Azerbaijan was successful,” Guliyev said. “The results of the pilot project in the city of Mingachevir and Yevlakh district of Azerbaijan satisfy us. Next year, the scope of the pilot project will expand.”

“It is planned to make additions and changes to the Law on Mandatory Health Insurance,” he added. “They will allow introducing mandatory health insurance throughout Azerbaijan. In addition, there are a number of issues that depend on the mandatory health insurance, for example, the creation of legislative basis for protecting patient rights.”

A pilot project for introduction of mandatory health insurance started in Azerbaijan's city of Mingachevir and Yevlakh district in late 2016.

Fitch says Az-Insurance’s business-plan is difficult for successful realization

The international rating agency Fitch Ratings has confirmed the financial stability rating of the Azerbaijani insurance company AzInsurance at the level of "B".

The outlook was downgraded from "Stable" to "Negative"

The revision of the rating outlook reflects the weak business profile of AzInsurance and the low stability of the insurer to the complex operating environment in Azerbaijan, the deterioration of the company's financial performance for the third quarter of 2017 and the lack of distinctive competitive advantages. The affirmation of the rating reflects the strong position of AzInsurance's regulatory capital.

"AzInsurance is an average insurance company, the company's fees for the first nine months of 2017 amounted to 17 million manats. We believe that the company has no special competitive advantages that could improve its financial performance or increase business volumes. In the third quarter, in response to a weaker economic environment, AzInsurance has adopted a new business plan. The company intends to optimize its business processes by digitizing, cutting costs and diversifying its list of insurance products due to product innovation, however, Fitch's views this business as a complex strategy for the successful implementation", the agency’s analysts say.

AzInsurance has been operating in the insurance market of Azerbaijan since 2006 and has branches and representative offices in several regions of the country: in Sumgait, Ganja, Lankaran, Shirvan, Sheki, Gabala, Terter, Shamakh and Yevlakh.

Azerbaijan increasing expenditures of state budget for 2018

Azerbaijan is increasing expenditures of the state budget for 2018, said the country’s Finance Minister Samir Sharifov addressing a plenary session of parliament.

He said that in general, expenditures of Azerbaijan’s state budget will be increased by 142 million manats.

“In particular, 3.8 million manats will be allocated for solving the problem with homeless animals in Baku, 46 million manats will be redirected from other expenses of the Ministry of Education for the payment of scholarships to students,” he noted. “Also according to the instruction of the Azerbaijani president, additional funds will be allocated for increments to salaries of the personnel of the Azerbaijan State Symphony Orchestra and for the regulation of a number of expenses of Azerbaijan’s Energy Ministry and the country’s trade representation in Poland.”

The minister also told about changes in the draft budget of the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ).

He noted that expenditures of SOFAZ for the next year will be reduced by 1.879 billion manats, and revenues will be increased by 883 million manats.

The Azerbaijani parliament adopted the draft state budget for 2018 at its plenary session on Dec. 1.

In the draft budget, the revenues of the Azerbaijani state budget for 2018 are forecast at 20.127 billion manats and expenditures at 21.047 billion manats.

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