Baku, May 18, AZERTAC
Today we celebrate Norway's freedom and independence. We also celebrate Norway's friendship with Azerbaijan. These friendly ties embrace the political level, our joint interests in the energy sector, our cultural cooperation, and the close contacts between Norwegian and Azerbaijani civil society, said Ambassador Bård Ivar Svendsen at the reception marking his country`s National Day.
The Ambassador said the modern Norwegian state is founded on their Constitution: "This Constitution is 204 years old and is the backbone of our democracy."
Mr. Bård Ivar Svendsen also mentioned that the modern Norwegian state is a global proponent of diversity, tolerance and equality. "Modern Norway is a welfare state with economic transparency."
The diplomat highlighted high degree of trust between the people and the state of Norway. "These traditions have developed over many generations, and they have made Norway strong."
"It is our responsibility to safeguard and promote these traditions for our children. It takes a long time to build trust, welfare, tolerance and friendship. It takes only one minute to break them," he pointed out.
Mr. Bård Ivar Svendsen also spoke of participation of the Norwegian businesses in Azerbaijan: "Earlier this year, MHWirth celebrated its twentieth anniversary in this country. I thank them for their generous contribution to this reception. Norway's largest company Statoil has been active in Azerbaijan for 26 years. Statoil adopted the new trade name Equinor. The new name conveys the company's readiness to meet the future, in which it will provide energy from both traditional and renewable sources."
He expressed confidence that Equinor, MHWirth and other Norwegian businesses will remain good partners for Azerbaijan.
The diplomat noted many Norwegians have lived in Azerbaijan over the years, adding "we have all come to cherish the people of Azerbaijan."
On the Armenia-Azerbaijan, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict the diplomat noted Norway supports Azerbaijan's territorial integrity and hopes to see a peaceful resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Azerbaijan`s Minister of Energy Parviz Shahbazov congratulated the Norwegian people on behalf of the government of Azerbaijan. He touched upon developing relations between Azerbaijan and Norway: "These bonds strengthened with the reciprocal visits, documents signed, projects realized between the two countries."
"Particularly, I would like to mention that Norway supports the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict within the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan."
The Minister said long-lasting activity of "Statoil" Company made great contribution to the energy cooperation. "There is huge potential for further development of bonds between the two countries," he noted.
He expressed hope that bilateral beneficial cooperation would further develop in energy field.
The reception was attended by state and government officials, MPs, ambassadors of foreign countries in Baku, representatives of international organizations and representatives of public.
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