Tokyo, March 15, AZERTAC
"Azerbaijan is interested in strengthening economic relations with Japan," said Azerbaijani President`s Assistant for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov in his interview with Japan's Kyodo news agency.
The agency said Ali Hasanov handed over a letter of President Ilham Aliyev to a government official inviting Premier Shinzo Abe to pay an official visit to Azerbaijan.
Kyodo cited Ali Hasanov as saying that the visit of the Japanese Prime Minister would give a significant impetus to the development of economic cooperation between the two countries, adding it would be the first visit of a Japanese PM since Azerbaijan regained its independence in 1991.
Hasanov highlights Azerbaijan's simplifying the visa regime for the citizens of Japan beginning from February 2016.
“The country aims to attract Japanese businessmen for mutual exchange and investment in the country.”
Describing Japan as a donor country implementing huge projects in Azerbaijan, Mr Hasanov said in 2013 alone the country invested $ 42.9 million in Azerbaijan.
Hailing Azerbaijan's rich natural resources, Mr. Hasanov said that a sharp decline in oil prices resulted in devaluation of the manat in the country. “Despite this, Azerbaijan will export natural gas to Europe starting from 2018, and to this end the realization of the TAP project continues.”
He also provides an insight into Azerbaijan's projects aimed at building transport and communication lines, as well as a railway line connecting Baku with Eastern Turkey. "Thanks to the realization of this project Azerbaijan will become a bridge connecting Japan to Europe via China and Central Asia. This bridge will cover not only railway lines, but the sea route," he added.
Following the interview Ali Hasanov met with Kyodo`s executive director Yoshida Shigeyuki.