“The first national satellite Azerspace-1 is as important for the development of non-oil sector of Azerbaijan as the “Contract of the Century” signed thanks to the resolute and powerful will of the national leader Heydar Aliyev, was significant for development of Azerbaijan’s oil industry”.
This was stated by Azerbaijani ambassador to Malaysia Tahir Karimov who commented the launch of Azerspace-1.
With the launch of Azerbaijan’s first communications satellite the country becomes a member of the limited countries who have satellite in space, the diplomat stressed. Accordingly, in the coming years, the profits from the information communications technologies will certainly exceed the oil incomes. This is not the first and last satellite of Azerbaijan and the country will launch next satellites. This gives reason to optimistically look forward to the economy of Azerbaijan. This project, as known, is intellectual and a result of international cooperation.
Dwelling on experience of Malaysia in this field, Ambassador Karimov said when in 1992 the ex-premier of Malaysia Mohamad Mahathir, initiator of realization of the cosmic industrial projects as the “Miracle of Malaysia”, his government was both internally and externally criticized. The country had only three TV channels then. Even appearance of cars in streets was extraordinary. The pessimists were doubtful for necessity of the satellite launch. They considered that Malaysia had enough economic problems and there is no need for extra expenses. It would be expedient to invest in welfare of nation, they insisted. But, thanks to resolute and serious efforts of Mohamad Mahathir, the first satellite of Malaysia was launched in 1996. And currently, the country has four satellites in space. Thus, the incomes from satellites now cover the earlier colossal expenses and promote to the development of country and enable to diversify economy of Malaysia.
The launch of the first satellite of Azerbaijan envisions full coverage of the project expenses after almost 7 years. And the exploitation term of satellite is 15 years at least. This means the project will bring AZN 30-40 million to the country’s state budget. As stated, discussions are already underway with the potential satellite users. One of the points to control the satellite is in Malaysia, while two are in Azerbaijan. Given that a reserve control center is in the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, it is also an integral part of the program for development of regions.