Azerbaijani President: “Initiatives and projects, put forward by Azerbaijan, have gone beyond the region”

Baku: “The decision of the European Olympic Committee to hold the first-ever European Games in Azerbaijan with the Muslim population – one of the wisest decisions adopted in recent years,” said President Ilham Aliyev at the official opening ceremony of the 3rd World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue titled “Sharing Culture for Shared Security,” APA reports.

“Today Azerbaijan is an authoritative member of the international community, plays a very positive role in the regional plane. Our initiatives are aimed at strengthening regional cooperation. Political and economic issues related to energy security are on the focus. ”

The head of state noted that initiatives and projects, put forward by Azerbaijan went beyond the borders of the region: “These projects connect countries and continents. If you pay attention to the issue of energy security, it clearly shows that Azerbaijan is already playing an important role in European energy security. Regarding transport infrastructure, today we are restoring the historic Silk Road. We create a new rail link between Asia and Europe. All our projects are related to economic and social development, strengthen regional co-operation, mutual understanding among peoples and nations. ”

President Aliyev said that the economic policy based on the natural resources of Azerbaijan allowed to achieve the goals set out in the first years of independence: “It was economic independence. Our foreign debt is very low, it is equal to 10 percent of gross domestic product. That is, we are not dependent on donors, sponsors, donations and assistance from international financial institutions. While we are actively cooperating with them.

We were able to maximize the energy security of our country, and today we are providing the energy security to others. Simultaneously social issues such as unemployment and poverty are addressed. Here we see a very positive trend. Today, Azerbaijan is one of the countries with the lowest levels of poverty and unemployment. This figure is 5 percent. This, of course, also creates a positive trend in the society. The combination of these factors plays an important role in enhancing the value of Azerbaijan. The massive attention is, of course, paid to domestic issues. ”

The President stressed that Azerbaijan is still much to do in order to achieve the goals and become a developed country: “According the assessment of the Davos Economic Forum, Azerbaijan ranks 38th in the world for economic competitiveness. This is accomplished thanks to the reforms not by natural resources. At the same time, we are initiating various projects, further bringing people together. This concerns the energy industry, the economy, political relations, as well as the humanitarian sector. Every year we organize International Humanitarian Forum, the World Summit of Religious Leaders in Baku. And this forum is organized for the third time. ”

SOURCE: Azeri Press News Agency