Azerbaijan and Belarus have many opportunities to further increase economic cooperation and maintain the positive attitudes that have been accumulated over the years, president of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev said at a meeting with President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, that in recent years, relations between Azerbaijan and Belarus have come a very long way and reached a very high level.
Belarus and Azerbaijan are traditional trading partners. From 2006 to 2012, the trade turnover between the countries increased six-fold. Belarus' major exports to Azerbaijan consist of mechanical engineering products, petrochemistry, woodworking industry and construction industries, food products, medicines and household appliances. In turn, Belarus imports oil, agricultural products, and fabrics made of synthetic filament yarn, as well as chemical industry products from Azerbaijan. According to Alexander Lukashenko, "the trade between the two countries in terms of volume could be the best, the greatest".
Cooperative ties between the two countries, including joint production of Azerbaijani-Belarusian products are developing stably and steadily. Starting with the usual assembly of technology, today many of them, including joint production of tractors, trucks, buses, and so on, have achieved the degree of localization of 40-60 per cent. At present, Azerbaijan assembles Belarusian tractors, trucks, cranes, equipment for communal services, optical equipment and elevators.
Azerbaijan's Ganja Automobile Plant is the leader of the Belarusian-Azerbaijani cooperation in the field of industrial cooperation. The joint project is being carried on its base, will allow this enterprise to become the region's largest producer of complex technological engineering products.
Taking into account all these factors, the sides came to the conclusion that Azerbaijani- Belarusian products that meet all quality standards must be delivered to foreign markets. Competitiveness of these products can guarantee the demand for them in third country markets.
The expansion of joint production in the areas that were greatly developed in Belarus, in particular the medicament production, was widely discussed. Belarus is ready to offer its technologies and share the process details, from packaging to production of the remedy and medicaments in the shortest possible time, which can also be delivered on the global trading platform in the future.
The lack of raw materials in Belarus also contributes to the convergence of economic interests of the two countries in the energy sector. As it is known, Azerbaijani oil supplies to Belarus started in 2011.
Azerbaijani entrepreneurs are also interested in entering the Belarusian market through the establishment of joint ventures for the production of food and trade-logistics centers and opening of representative offices of Azerbaijani banks, restaurant business, activity in the tourism area, hotel construction and so on.
President Lukashenko has called for greater investments in Belarusian projects that may catch the interest of Azerbaijani businessmen and the country. "We are ready and waiting for your proposals, if you are interested and ready to grow your petrochemistry, agriculture and pharmaceutical industries," President Lukashenko said. In particular, the possibility of Azerbaijani participation in the privatization process in Belarus was stressed.
As one can see, the economic relations between the two countries are being fully developed. According to the expectations, doubling of the trade turnover, the number of joint projects, as well as the expansion of the cooperation areas may become results of the Belarusian president's visit to Azerbaijan.