The 5th meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation between Azerbaijan and Italy was held

 

 

The 5th meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation between the Republic of Azerbaijan and Italy was held in Rome. Speaking at a meeting of the commission, Minister of Energy Parviz Shahbazov noted the successful development of relations between Azerbaijan and Italy, one of the country's main trading partners.  The important role of high-level mutual visits in developing relations with Italy was particularly emphasized, including the visits of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev to Italy in 2015, of President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella to Baku and of First Vice President Mehriban Aliyeva to Italy in 2018. It was noted that in 2018, trade between our countries grew by 9.7%. The growth trend continued for 9 months of 2019, an increase of 10.5% was observed. 113 Italian companies are registered in various fields in our country. The Minister of Energy noted that up to now, Italy has invested 770 million USD in the economy of Azerbaijan, and Azerbaijan 1.7 billion USD in the Italian economy.

Highlighting that economic partnership with Italy is based primarily on the energy sector, and our country is one of Italy's major suppliers of oil,  SOCAR has supplied 15.9 million tons of crude oil, 189,000 tons of oil products and 43.7 thousand tons of petrochemical products to Italy over the last two years, Italian companies are involved in our important energy projects, the Minister spoke about the importance of TAP as a project to strengthen energy cooperation: “This year the Southern Gas Corridor will be commissioned, and this is of strategic importance for ensuring the energy security of our countries, partners, and Europe. The implementation of more than 90% of the project is an indicator of the support of Italian government for the project. We thank the Italian government for granting all permits, progress in construction on offshore and onshore. We believe that our joint efforts will ensure the timely completion of the TAP project. It will also contribute to address issues such as safe, diversified and competitive energy supply, as well as decarbonization.”

The minister spoke about the reforms carried out under the leadership of President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, diversification of the economy and measures to increase the availability of the business environment. He invited Italian companies to take advantage of the economic opportunities available in our country and to participate in cooperation in areas such as energy, non-oil sector, new technologies, investments and contractors.

Manlio Di Stefano, Secretary of State of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said that the commission's meeting will play an important role in assessment of existing cooperation and developing relations in new areas. Azerbaijan is one of the important countries to which Italy pays special attention in the region in the fields of economy and energy.

Joint measures to deepen cooperation on trade and economic, energy, logistics and infrastructure, agriculture, culture and tourism and other fields were identified. Investment opportunities in both countries with the participation of AZPROMO, Azerbaijan Investment Company, the Agency for Development of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan and relevant Italian agencies were reviewed.

Protocol was signed on the outcomes of the 5th meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission. The document was signed by the co-chairs of the intergovernmental commission - the Minister of Energy of Azerbaijan Parviz Shahbazov and the Secretary of State of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Manlio Di Stefano.

Within the meeting of Intergovernmental Commission, the Minister of Energy Parviz Shahbazov met with Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, Italian Minister of Economic Development Stefano Patuanelli and State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Manlio Di Stefano. At the meetings, the outcomes of the 5th meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission were discussed, and the sides exchanged views on measures to expand political and economic relations, the Southern Gas Corridor and its integral part TAP. It was noted that the Azerbaijani-Italian trade and economic partnership, in particular in the energy sector, is strategically important, and the meeting of the intergovernmental commission and meetings will provide important steps to strengthen these relations.

The Minister of Energy also met with the leaders of 8 Italian companies, including “Maire Tecnimont”, “Ansaldo Energia”, “Tenaris” and “Technip Italy”.

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