Statement of President Ilham Aliyev
- Dear Mr. President,
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen!
Mr. President, first of all, let me sincerely welcome you to Azerbaijan again – welcome to Azerbaijan! I would like to congratulate you once again on your victory in the presidential elections. I am glad for your visit to Azerbaijan after a short time. It shows that you pay close attention to the relations of our countries. We are happy for intensive and successful development of the relations between our countries. Today's visit and discussions are indicators of successful future of our relations.
Our nations have been together for centuries. We have always been friends and brothers. Today our close friendship is the main factor for bilateral relations between our countries. Our interstate relations are built based on this strong foundation. Today the cooperation between Azerbaijan and Georgia develops successfully in all fields.
Our political relations are at high level. High-level meetings, as well as consultations are held regularly. We always support each other within the international organizations. Supporting each other Georgia and Azerbaijan show solidarity on issues related to territorial integrity.
Certainly, major part of our cooperation is related to the energy sector. Today we have had discussions on these issues. It is necessary to note that our cooperation has long history. Besides we have implemented big projects with joint efforts. Looking back at history, we can see that construction of Baku-Supsa pipeline in 1990s was a big event. This allowed to join the Caspian and Black sea with oil pipeline. Furthermore, Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum natural gas pipelines were constructed. All these projects have been implemented with joint efforts of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. Today these projects contribute to our economic development. With this route, the Southern Gas Corridor project is being successfully implemented. It is the biggest infrastructure project in the region. The project of SGC will be realized soon. Last year was important for implementation of this project. Last year the Southern Gas Corridor was officially opened. Today transmission of natural gas through TANAP has already started. At the early stages of projects, three countries were cooperating. Today the number of countries is increasing and new partners are joining to the project.
Paying close attention to the field of transport, we also discussed this issue. The amount of freight passing through our countries has increased with opening of BTK Railway. We are at first stage of this project. However, we have already seen the benefits and increasing amount of freight indicates that we are on the right way. After opening of BTK railway, Azerbaijan has negotiated actively with neighboring countries located in the eastern part of Caspian sea. I am sure that freight transport will will further rise on the basis of this agreement with neighboring countries. It is our joint project. This new corridor will connect the continents.