Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov has met with BP's Group Chief Executive Bob Dudley during his working visit to the United Kingdom, Azerbaijan's Foreign Ministry said.
During the meeting the parties exchanged views on the current state and prospects of Azerbaijan-BP cooperation.
Minister Mammadyarov and the BP chief executive both expressed satisfaction with mutually beneficial energy cooperation and confidence between Azerbaijan and BP, and stressed that this partnership has made the realization of large-scale energy projects possible, which significantly contributes to the energy security of the European Union.
The sides also emphasized huge potential of the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline (TANAP) and Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) as these projects open up new opportunities for gas supplies to Europe, and expressed hope that beneficial cooperation will continue and new energy projects will be successful.
During his visit to the UK on September 3-5, the Azerbaijani foreign minister met with the UK Foreign Secretary, MPs and political analysts.
The two ministers exchanged views on issues on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council where Azerbaijan holds a non-permanent seat. They also held extensive talks on bilateral cooperation and stressed huge potential to broaden the cooperation in the years to come.
The United Kingdom recognized the independence of Azerbaijan on December 26, 1991. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were established on March 11, 1992. The British embassy was opened in Baku in September 1993 and the Azerbaijani embassy in London in January 1994.
Since 1992 Azerbaijan and the UK benefit from close bilateral partnership and cooperation in the framework of international organizations such as the United Nations, OSCE, Council of Europe, NATO, etc. The relations have covered a wide range of issues -- from high-level political dialogue to growing trade and investment links, as well as strengthening cultural and humanitarian ties.
The UK supports a peaceful and lasting solution of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on the basis of universally accepted principles of international law. The UK recognizes the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and expresses its support to the efforts of the mediating OSCE Minsk Group to assist in finding a lasting solution to the conflict.
The economic cooperation between the two countries, especially in the energy sector, is at the core of the relations between Azerbaijan and the UK. The UK is the largest foreign direct investor in to Azerbaijan, followed by the U.S. and Japan. BP, RAMCO and Monument Oil and Gas are the largest investing companies. There are over 5,000 British expatriates working in Azerbaijan, mainly in and around the capital Baku. Over 150 UK firms operate in Azerbaijan, including GBI International, the British Bank of the Middle East and Sedgwick.
Azerbaijan cooperates with the UK in exploration and transportation of oil and natural gas from the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea. BP as a leading oil company has been active in Azerbaijan since 1992 and participates in the main production sharing agreements such as the "Contract of the Century" (Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli), the agreement signed in 1994 with major oil companies of the world to tap the country's resource-rich energy fields, and the major Shah Deniz gas project.