The Azerbaijan State News Agency



As was informed, on 25 August at the hotel “Adlon” in Berlin, the German Company Siemens has arranged a banquet in honor of the President of Azerbaijan Republic Ilham Aliyev.

Mr. Rudi Lamprecht, member of the Eastern Europe Relations Committee, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens, opened the meeting also attended by heads of other leading German companies. He, in particular, said:

“Mr. President!

Dear visitors from Azerbaijan!

Ladies and gentlemen!

Today is a special day. Not only because we today are here but also because all 30 minutes ago Azerbaijan has won a gold medal at the Olympic games. This event is the good beginning for today's evening.

Mr. President, it is a great honor to welcome you today on behalf of Committee of the East Europe relations. I am glad to welcome you on behalf of the German business. The represented companies have a long-term operational experience with Azerbaijan. Some of them carry out interesting projects, and others - just establish links. It is glad, that this meeting passes in Berlin. This meeting has been prepared for a year. Mr. President, for last 8 years the Committee in second time meets the representative of high rank officials from Azerbaijan.

All of us know, that Azerbaijan is extremely important and interesting partner for the German business. Its value grows due to expansion of the European Union and the program of the new neighborhood. I think, I shall not open America if I shall tell, that the Committee of the East Europe relations is devoted to the plan of the further expansion of the European Union, the admission into it of the countries of Southern Caucasus and going to work in this direction.

Azerbaijan is dynamically developing and extending potential market. Economic parameters speak for themselves. The internal total product, which growth for the last some years has exceeded 10 percents, has included economy of Azerbaijan in number of promptly developing economy of the world. If to compare, it is possible to be convinced that the national economy develops in 4 times faster than economy of the United States of America and 12 times than economy of the European Union. It is delightful figures even if to take into account not so large scales of economy. However, there is also such fact that economic growth, basically, depends on the prices for oil. It stimulates extraction and export of oil, allows achieving increase in public revenues, receipts in the budget. At the same time, steady growth of economy is possible only in case of continuation, and successful continuation of the policy of economic reforms by Azerbaijan.

From this point of view, oil and gas sectors can play a role of the locomotive, which will lead behind itself other sectors. And from the long-term point of view, in economy, it is necessary to observe a principle of self-maintenance. Other sectors also if to use the following metaphor, should become the locomotive.

Unfortunately, the Caucasus still is not stable region. And it renders negative influence on its economic development. We welcome efforts of Azerbaijan on maintenance both internal and international stability. The program on reduction of poverty, on which the government works, will play the basic role in achievement of stability. Economic growth also plays the leading part on a way of overcoming of poverty. On behalf of German business I would like to wish you successes in business of achievement of steady development.

Azerbaijan and Germany are loyal partners. Trade between our countries steadily develops and now has reached a level of 400 million Euros. Despite of this parameter, all of us know, that the potential of cooperation is not used to the full. Among the countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, Azerbaijan is our 5th large trading partner. At the same time, the volume of bilateral trade with Azerbaijan is too small. Investments also are not at a satisfactory level for both sides. I am confident, that on the second phase of development of the Azerbaijan economy amount of the German companies arriving to this country will increase. In particular, there are ample opportunities in the field of power stations, constructions, light industry, information technologies, and telecommunications. There are large opportunities and in sphere of technology of safety, and in agriculture.

For the last some years, there have been adjusted numerous links, the committees have carried out corresponding work. There are intergovernmental working groups on investments and trade. The special joint business - group has been created. The purpose of the companies included in it consists in development of bilateral business and elimination of difficulties. Several months ago there has been solved the question to allocate assistance at a rate of 17 million Euros. These means also will be spent for expansion of bilateral business - links in 2004-2005. The agency of development of Germany has office in Azerbaijan basic purpose of which consists in rendering assistance to realization of various projects, including in the field of business. An example to that can become the German -Azerbaijan Association on development of trade relations. This organization includes already 40 German companies. The purpose of the organization will consist in consolidation of economic interests of Germany and Azerbaijan, their promotion in conformity with interests of both countries. Recently, commercial and industrial chamber of Azerbaijan has opened office in Berlin and actively advances the links between our countries. All told testifies that we are on a true way”.

Then, Mr. Rudi Lamprecht spoke of activities of the Siemens SC in Azerbaijan.

Head of the Azerbaijan State made a large speech at the meeting.

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