Azerbaijani President: The only negative case in oil price fall is that what we have planned to do in one year we will do within two years; “Our economy will grow steadily even at the price of $60 per barrel”

Baku: “The oil price fall in the world will undoubtedly have a negative impact on our plans. However, we have developed a variety of scenarios. Our economy will grow steadily even at the price of $60 per barrel”, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in an interview with Russia-24 TV channel of All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company.

The president said Azerbaijan expects a three percent growth this, noting that despite this fact, non-oil sector is considered while calculating gross domestic product and the situation is better in this sector.

“We expect six or seven percent rise in this sector. It was ten percent last year. We expect 6-7 percent growth in the non-oil sector of economy next year. This is just the result of the policy of diversification as well as our efforts and investment on diversification of the Azerbaijani economy. Today, the oil sector comprises about 45 percent of Azerbaijan’s GDP, which is less than a half. Oil price in budget makes $90 a barrel. It was $100 last year. However, when we adopted the budget with the oil price of $90 a barrel, the oil price was $90. The only negative case in oil price fall is that what we have planned to do in one year we will do within two years. We will reduce budget expenses on non-priority areas and infrastructure projects. Luckily, we have already implemented main parts of those projects in the previous years,” said the president.

The Azerbaijani president said the government has taken substantial measures to stimulate entrepreneurship in order to carry the economy to the current level of development, issuing soft loans, allotting subsidies to farmers.

“We’ll try to make oil incomes account for one-third of our gross domestic product. Only then can we consider our diversification policy to have worked. We think it is right. Because the oil factor was almost 80 percent at the time we initiated these programs. Now, it’s 45 percent. That is, tendency is gradually declining. It should be taken into account that we expect significant increase in gas production and sales in the near future. Thus, the volume of oil is going to increase in GDP,” the president said.

President Ilham Aliyev said it’s hard to expect a more detailed analysis from local and world analysts: “Perhaps, they rely on a general prognosis like the world trend. No one can foretell what would happen ahead. It seems there are objective reasons for that. No one has so far accurately explained why it all happened”.

SOURCE: AZERI PRESS NEWS AGENCY