Minsk, November 28, AZERTAC
Following their private talk, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko have met in an expanded format.
The heads of state made speeches at the event.
President Alexander Lukashenko said:
- Dear Ilham Heydarovich,
I heartily welcome you to Belarusian land. The current visit is a testament to the active development of close and friendly relations between Belarus and Azerbaijan, which we value very highly. Given the crisis in the global economy, I think we should now focus on new ideas and directions of mutually beneficial cooperation. This is what we have been talking about with Mr. Aliyev. In the current difficult situation, our states, fortunately, did not allow a significant reduction of trade. Nevertheless, time requires us to act fast and make effective decisions to boost economic cooperation, including interaction in third countries. I am proud to point to the productivity of the joint project on the production of Belarusian tractors MTZ and machinery of the Minsk automobile plant MZKT at the Ganja Automobile Plant. Since 2007, it has produced 6,000 "Belarus" tractors and about 3,000 cars and trailers. There are ample opportunities for expanding bilateral cooperation in other areas. To improve transport links, for example, we can offer affordable but yet reliable buses of small and medium class, passenger carriages, as well as comfortable buses produced jointly with Switzerland for urban transportation and powered by environmentally friendly gas engines, which can be assembled in your country.
I think that our participation could be useful in further improving Azerbaijan’s transport infrastructure, for example, in designing a line to supply equipment for the establishment of high-speed urban rail transport between the center of Baku and its suburbs, including comfortable travel to Heydar Aliyev Airport. There are significant reserves in the development of mutual deliveries of tobacco and cigarettes, and such relationships should be established on a long-term basis.
With the participation of Azerbaijani business circles we would also like to consider cooperation opportunities in the petrochemical industry, energy and agriculture. Of particular relevance in the modern world is the sphere of information technologies and information security. It is necessary to continue work on identifying joint projects in this area. I do hope that today's meeting will give an additional impetus to the development of our cooperation and fill it with concrete content.
I want to emphasize again, Mr. Aliyev, that Azerbaijan was and still is a reliable friend and partner of Belarus. We appreciate our friendship and are ready to sincerely and openly contribute to the promotion of your interests in the Eurasian economic union if this is beneficial to you.
I am grateful to you, Mr. Aliyev, for keeping your word at this difficult time. As you can see, there are a few things to talk about. So let me welcome you to Belarus again.
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President Ilham Aliyev said:
- Thank you very much, dear Alexander Grigoryevich. First of all, I would like to thank you for your hospitality and for the invitation to come to Belarus again on an official visit. I am always happy to visit your country and feel at home here.
As you mentioned, in recent years our countries have established a very trustful level of relations, which are developing very successfully. And today we discussed both what has been done and what we still plan to do. But first of all I would like to sincerely congratulate you on your convincing victory in the presidential election. The people of Belarus have once again shown confidence in you and the outcomes of the election are actually the results of your work as leader of the country.
I think that members of my delegation once again saw today how successfully Belarus is developing – rapidly and effectively. Minsk has become a beautiful city – beautiful, comfortable and clean. I am sure that it is a pleasure to live and work here, and to come here. Our countries have relations of the highest level. You are quite right that we worked hard on this. Over all these years of active cooperation, which began just over 10 years ago, I think we have tested each other in different situations. We have passed the tests of durability and reliability and never failed each other. So today we believe in each other and our words are just as trustworthy as signatures on the documents.
Today we will sign documents that will determine the directions for cooperation in the future. But most importantly, we have agreement on many issues. We are delighted that Belarus is developing successfully. As you said, we live in a difficult time. The economic crisis is exacerbated by political and in many countries by military-political crises. We live in a period of confrontation, which, of course, demands new approaches to the solution of international issues. And under such circumstances the political stability existing in Belarus is the main indicator of success and the main guarantee that this success will be continued. We, as friends, are very happy about that.
For us, Belarus is a friendly and brotherly country. I am sure that after this visit our relations will develop even faster.