Welcoming the UK Minister, President Ilham Aliyev said:
-I am sure the commission’s agenda is very broad, because you have to do a lot of things together. I am sure your visit will be a very important step in implementation of our plans and planning for new developments. Definitely it will strengthen even more our bilateral ties which develop very successfully. As you know, I have been many times in the United Kingdom. My last visit was three years ago when I met the then Prime Minister Madame May and we had very good discussions. After that, despite pandemic, relations were in a very active phase. So, this year in February we hosted Minister Madame Morton, which also, we had a very good conversation, now your visit. So, all this demonstrates a very active political dialogue, also big prospects in economic area. I just looked at the papers before your arrival to Azerbaijan and saw that it’s more than 30 billion of investments from United Kingdom to Azerbaijan. Really, it’s a lot and it helped us to develop. It helped us to develop not only in oil industry and gas industry but general development, because these investments led to additional revenues to our budget which we reinvested in non-oil and gas related areas. Today, cooperation continues very actively. BP is our strategic partner. For 30 years and at least 30 years to come, because there are new prospects, new agreements signed. As you know now both BP and Azerbaijan are very actively working on renewable sources of energy. I just received information recently from our minister that there is a plan to invest in solar power generation on the liberated areas which will be very helpful to us especially with respect to the fact that we announced liberated territories of Karabakh as a territory of green energy and smart city. At the same time, I would like to say that we already invited British companies as our partners, among the first foreign companies to work with us on the restoration, reconstruction of the liberated territories and this process already started. Cities’ master plans have already been prepared and we are in a very active phase. We want to expand cooperation with British companies, as companies from a friendly country. I am sure that during the session of the commission this issue also will be discussed. So, really we have very broad agenda of bilateral cooperation. Once again welcome to Azerbaijan.
UK Minister for Exports Graham Stuart:
-Your Excellency, thank you so much for your warm welcome and I am delighted to be here, UK, as you know, is a long standing partner and a champion of Azerbaijan’s sovereignty and independency. We are pleased and privileged to be a close partner with Azerbaijan and work for so many years. We are also excited on many things, but I pick out two, one is your vision, of a greener and sustainable future, which the UK is committed to and I think it is your vision to ensure that Azerbaijan has not only just a successful oil and gas economy but thinks ahead, plans strategically for a long term, because a future is going to be greener, that is where the global investment is going to go and the opportunity for us to deepen our relationship. As you say with BP as a strategic partner, there is an enormous opportunity there and by putting the right policies and measures in place and as your long-term legacy for the country is to built-up and develop it on oil and gas, but looking to the future.