Georgian Economy Minister, Azerbaijani Officials Pledge to Deepen Ties

Georgian Economy Minister Natia Turnava, who is visiting Baku on September 17-18, met with her Azerbaijani counterpart, Minister of Economic Development Shahin Mustafayev today, pledging to deepen ties.

Natia Turnava said “Georgia and Azerbaijan jointly represent an attractive market for international investors, cargo turnover, [and] tourism development.”

“We agreed to represent the idea of our transport logistic corridor at international fora to demonstrate its importance – we can manage that better together than separately,” Minister Turnava said following the meeting.

According to her, at the meeting they spoke of deepening “strategic partnership” between Georgia and Azerbaijan in different spheres, including the four priority areas:

  1. Joint enterprises and investments;
  2. Energy;
  3. Logistic and transportation;
  4. Tourism.

Turnava also noted that the two countries have “a tradition” of business cooperation, therefore, their ministries aim to create the profitable environment to further develop their ties.

Azerbaijan was Georgia’s third largest trading partner in 2018 following Turkey and Russia. Georgia’s trade turnover with Azerbaijan, according to the State Statistics Office (Geostat), stood at USD 1.1 billion in 2018, with exports at USD 502 million (USD 272.1 million in 2017) and imports at USD 593 million (USD 567 million in 2017).

Yesterday, Minister Turnava also met with the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev. At the meeting the parties spoke of trade and economic cooperation between Georgia and Azerbaijan, as well as their tourism potential.

Georgian Economy Ministry reported that Turnava and Aliyev also underscored importance of maintaining peace in the region for the countries’ “fully-fledged development and implementation of transport and energy projects of global importance.”

“Importance of increasing the efficiency and competitiveness of the transport corridor, as well as promotion of the two countries’ transit potential on the international level,” was also underscored, Ministry added.

Minister Turnava hoped that high-level Azerbaijani officials will attend the upcoming Tbilisi Silk Road Forum on October 22-23.

According to the Economy Ministry, Turnava thanked President Aliyev for his country’s support to Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and noted that Azerbaijan is Georgia’s “strategic partner and a reliable neighbor,” and that Georgia pays particular attention to further developing bilateral ties with Azerbaijan.

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