Today.Az Covering Azerbaijan inside and outside Today.Az Iran Trade official rejects "gas for food exchange" claim with Iraq World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 16:45:00 +0400 By  TrendHead of Iran-Iraq Chamber of Commerce Yahya Al-e Es'haq has refuted the Reuters report regarding the exchange of Iranian gas for Iraqi food supplies, ILNA reported.“We made more than six billion dollars worth of export to Iraq in the initial seven months of the year, and are willing to import some stuff in return; however, importing food supplies from Iraq is an inaccurate an unfounded lie. As a matter of fact, quite contrarily, Iran is the one providing Iraq with food supplies and not the other way around,” he was quoted as saying.According to the controversial report, two Iraqi officials have talked about Iran’s agreement to receive food and humanitarian items in return for local gas and energy supplies. Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan open new bus route World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 16:35:00 +0400 By  TrendA new regular bus run was launched between Chirchik (Tashkent region) and Almaty (Kazakhstan) on the evening of Nov. 14, the press service of the Uzbek Agency of Automobile Transport said in a statement.The length of the route passing through the checkpoint on the Turkistan – Kazygurt border is 816 kilometers. Travel time is 16 hours 30 minutes. The fare from Uzbekistan to Kazakhstan is 150,000 soums (about $18), from Kazakhstan to Uzbekistan – 6,000 tenge (about $16).Belgian Van Hool buses will be used for the routes.Back in July, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan launched the new international bus run Tashkent-Kyzylorda-Tashkent.Four regular international bus runs were organized on the routes Tashkent-Almaty-Tashkent, Tashkent-Shymkent-Tashkent, Tashkent-Bishkek-Tashkent, Tashkent-Khojent-Tashkent.On these routes, 400 passengers leave and 420 passengers arrive to Uzbekistan daily. As of today, about 50,000 passengers have been transported.In the 1H2018, 504 million tons of cargo and 2.82 billion passengers were transported by motor vehicles of Uzbekistan, an increase of 4.6 percent and 12.2 percent respectively compared to the same period last year. Living near mud volcanoes should be prevented Society Thu, 15 Nov 2018 16:17:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Leman MammadovaAzerbaijan is one of the countries where mud volcanoes are most widespread. Over 350 mud volcanoes are located in the Absheron peninsula and the Caspian Sea. Mosto volcanoes are active throughout the year and only 43 of the mud volcanoes are protected by the state. For security reasons, the admission of people there is prohibited.Some of the volcanoes may pose a threat to the people and their homes located nearby. Bozdag Gobu and Keyreki volcanoes located on Absheron peninsula may cause serious threat to the people living around it,  the head of the mud volcanism department of the Institute of Geology and Geophysics of ANAS, Doctor of Geological and Mineralogical Sciences, Adil Aliyev told Trend. He noted that mud volcanoes received the status of natural monuments in 2002 in accordance with the law “Specially Protected Areas and Districts” and the order on the Establishment of the State Natural Reserve of Mud Volcanoes in Baku and Absheron Peninsula was signed in 2015. Thus, destruction, pollution of the volcanoes and the construction of residential buildings in the nearby territories were prevented.Unfortunately, at present there is a large residential area in the protected area of the Keyreki volcano, near the Binagadi settlement, whereas there were just three individual homes in 2001.Aliyev also mentioned that the Keyreki volcano is active and frequently erupts. He recalled that the same volcano erupted last time in 2017. “The carbon dioxide itself is very damaging to the health of the people living there, although the volcano eruption does not cause an ignition,” he explained.Aliyev noted that the same situation has occurred near Bozdag Gobu volcano as the number of houses near the crater has increased.Earlier, Aliyev said that an eruption of six mud volcanoes is expected in Azerbaijan in the next months and in 2019. There is the likelihood of an eruption of the Bozdag Gobu volcano on the Absheron peninsula, the Bahar volcano in the Alat village, the Shekikhan, Nardaranakhtarma, Ayazakhtarma and Shikhzerli volcanoes in Gobustan, he said.The activity of mud volcanoes is closely linked to the seismicity of the Azerbaijani territory. Mud volcanoes are one of the key points for the discovery of oil and gas fields. In the 1920s, a prominent researcher, Professor D.V. Golubyatnikov called the mud volcano “free exploration well”. According to geologists, mud volcanoes are formed as a result of extreme pressure of hydrocarbon gases accumulated in oil fields.Volcanic water is widely used in the treatment of a number of diseases-nervous system, skin diseases, radiculitis, urology, gynecology and etc. Clays of mud volcanoes are considered to be minerals. Fluid of mud volcanoes is used as raw materials in chemical and construction industry, as well as in pharmacology.There are 1,400-1,500 mud volcanoes on Earth. Mud volcanoes appeared on the territory of the present Azerbaijan Republic 25 million years ago.Mud volcanoes are located far from populated areas. Most of these territories are under protection, and it is strictly forbidden for people to enter there without special permission. Otherwise, everyone will face a large fine - for individuals the amount is 400-600 manats, and for officials – 2,000-4,000 manats.These bans have several reasons. Firstly, in this way the territory of the volcanoes is protected from possible contamination by people, secondly, possible attempts to carry away the mud from the territory of the reserve are prevented (this mud can be used during construction). And finally, the main reason is that each eruption volcano is a danger to human life. Volcanic eruptions have occurred on the territory of Azerbaijan many times. The first eruption of the volcano occurred in 1828. It was located 15 km from the capital Lokbatan volcano, and it has erupted 17 times since then. National wrestlers win silver at World Championships Sports Thu, 15 Nov 2018 15:59:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Abdul KerimkhanovNational wrestlers Murad Mamedov (60 kg) and Kerim Jafarov (67 kg) in Greco-Roman style won silver medals.World Championship in wrestling among athletes under 23 years started on November 12 in Bucharest.The best wrestlers under the age of 23 from all over the world take part in the championship.In the final, national wrestler Murad Mamedov lost to Japanese Kenichiro Fumitaye, Jafarov in turn, lost to Egyptian Mohammed Ibrahim Alseyid.Another Azerbaijani Greco-Roman wrestler Islam Abbasov (87 kg) won a bronze medal on November 12.Thus, in the asset of the Azerbaijani national team two silver and one bronze medals.World Championship will end on November 18.Wrestling remains the most popular sport in the country and is overseen by the National Wrestling Federation, which was established in 1993.The Rio Games opened a new page in wrestling for Azerbaijan. The country became one of only two nations ever to increase the number of medals achieved in five consecutive Games.Azerbaijan left Rio de Janeiro with a total of 18 medals. Nine of these medals were distributed to the Azerbaijani team in wrestling.The Greco-Roman and freestyle wrestling has rich history and unique traditions.The ‘national wrestling’ has a more ancient history. The elements of this national wrestling can be encountered on the Gobustan rocks in Azerbaijan, in folk and classical literature, and sagas. Digitalization may become one of drivers of development of Azerbaijani banks Business Thu, 15 Nov 2018 15:46:00 +0400 By  TrendDigitalization may become one of the drivers of the development of the Azerbaijani banking system, Zakir Nuriyev, chairman of the Azerbaijan Banks Association, said at the 3rd International Banking Forum in Baku on Nov. 15.“This will increase trust between investors and banks and ensure transparency in the sector,” he said.Nuriyev said that banks spent approximately 310 million manats (eight percent of non-interest expenses) to implement financial technologies in 2012-2017.“Digitalization requires big investments from banks,” he said. “The banks will receive big income over the medium term. In 2010 the volume of transactions on interbank payments amounted to 85 billion manats, while 2017 this figure was 210 billion manats. This figure is expected to reach 255 billion manats by the end of this year."Nuriyev also touched on the indicators of the banking sector for the first nine months of 2018.Thus, in January-September 2018 the total assets of banks increased by 4.6 percent and reached 29.2 billion manats, the loan portfolio - by five percent to 11.9 billion manats, capitalization - by 11 percent to 4.1 billion manats, deposits of the population - by 8.4 percent to 8.2 billion manats compared to January-September 2017.The two-day 3rd International Banking Forum "Non-cash Economy: Transition from Traditional to Digital Banking", organized by the Central Bank, Azerbaijan’s Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FIMSA), the Center for Analysis of Economic Reforms and Communication and the Azerbaijan Banks Association, kicked off in Baku on Nov. 15.About 100 representatives of local and foreign financial organizations of Europe, the US, Japan, China and the CIS, including Citibank, Commerzbank AG, Yandex.Money, Raiffeisen Bank International AG, Deloitte, Standard Chartered Bank, Moody's Investors Service and others, participate in the event.(1.7 manats = $1 on Nov. 15) START Festival of Short Films solemnly opens Arts & Entertainment Thu, 15 Nov 2018 15:37:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Laman IsmayilovaThe grand opening of the nineth START International Festival of Short Films " was held at Nizami Cinema Center in Baku on November 14.Famous art and culture figures, foreign guests as well as young Azerbaijani filmmakers attended the event, Trend Life reported.Addressing the event, the festival director and film producer Fehruz Shamiyev noted that the project aims to watch and discuss films, identify the best of them, familiarize local specialists with world practice and new trends in cinema. The festival "START" creates an opportunity to establish links between local directors and foreign colleagues.Shamiyev expressed his gratitude to all who assisted in holding the festival.Speaking at the evening, First Deputy Minister of Culture of Azerbaijan Vagif Aliyev stressed that this year marks the 120th anniversary of Azerbaijani cinema. The deputy minister spoke about the history of the development of domestic cinema, noting the achievements and successes of Azerbaijani filmmakers.It was emphasized that the International Short Film Festival "START" occupies a worthy place among the international film festivals, and the fact that this year works from 45 countries of the world were sent to the festival speaks about its significance.Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Intigam Babayev stressed that the International Festival "START" began its work in 2004, and today is a successful project.Next, the jury members were invited to the stage, who spoke about the festival.The 9th START International Festival of Short Films will run until November 17.The slogan of the festival is "It is better to watch a hundred films than to hear about them a hundred times."The project aims to review and discuss films, identify the best of them, familiarize local specialists with international practice and new trends in cinema. The festival "START" creates an opportunity to establish links between local directors and their foreign colleagues.The international festival is co-organized by the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Cinema Center for Young Cinematographers, Azerbaijan Youth and the Producers Guild.The first ever film contest "Cinemobil" will be held as part of the festival. Films taken on a mobile phone will take part in the contest. Only three films out of 15 are allowed to online voting.Moreover, a pitching (presentation of a film project with a view to finding investors willing to finance this project) will be held as well. Only three film projects will be chosen among 10 works.The Organizing Committee has also increased the number of nominations. Along with the nominations "Best Feature Film", "Best Documentary Film", "Best Animated Film", "Best Experimental Film", the winners will also be defined in such categories as "Best Director of a Feature Film", "Best Director of a Documentary Film", "Best Director of Animated Film", "Best Experimental Film Director".Azerbaijani films will compete for the prize in the categories "Best Feature Film", "Best Documentary Film", "Best Animated Film", "Best Director", "Best Producer", "Best Screenplay", "Best Cameraman".The works included in the international competition program of the festival will be evaluated by members of the international jury consisting of five people - Ayaz Salayev (Azerbaijan), Gulbara Tolomushova (Kyrgyzstan), Cambuzia Partovi (Iran), Tobias Büchner (Germany) and Zahra Badalbeyli (Azerbaijan).In addition, a  special program dedicated to the 120th anniversary of the Azerbaijani cinema, as well as master classes, discussions, etc. will also be held.Media partners of the event are,,, Abe and Putin agree to boost cooperation between defense ministries World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 15:15:00 +0400 By  TrendJapanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin have agreed at bilateral talks in Singapore to expand cooperation between the defense ministries, Japanese Foreign Ministry's press secretary Takeshi Osuga told a briefing on Thursday, TASS reports."What concerns cooperation between the defense ministries, the two leaders reached an agreement to further facilitate measures to increase trust between the ministries and to develop cooperation in the sphere of responding to non-traditional security threats," Osuga said.Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said earlier that Putin and Abe agreed to activate Russian-Japanese talks on a peace treaty on the basis of the 1956 declaration. Abe told reporters that he will visit Russia at the beginning of 2019 and expressed hope that they will be able to resolve a territorial dispute and sign a peace treaty. EBRD president optimistic about Central Asia’s future World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 14:54:00 +0400 By  TrendThe Central Asia Investment Forum took place in Beijing on November 14. The event was organized by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) with sponsorship by the Industrial and Commercial Bank, reports.Speaking at the opening of the Forum, EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti noted that successful diversification is the way forward for the economies of Central Asia as the region reassumes its ancient role as a bridge joining Europe with the Far East, according to press release issued by the EBRD.“I am optimistic about Central Asia’s future,” President Chakrabarti stressed.“The opportunities for you to be involved in the success story that is Central Asia have, to my mind, never looked more attractive,” he told investors.With an overall growth rate of 4.6 per cent forecast this year, Central Asia is reportedly growing faster than any of the regions where the EBRD operates. For a long time economic development was mostly reliant on the region’s abundant resources in oil and gas. But today this is changing and President Chakrabarti stated: “There is much more to Central Asia than traditional carbon energy.”He listed strengthening the financial sector, pioneering renewables, promoting energy efficiency, modernizing infrastructure, boosting small businesses and advancing the cause of inclusion as key tasks for the region’s further development.“In this the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) could be a “significant factor in helping the EBRD and the countries where we invest build the open market economies our mandate commits us to, as well as delivering the Sustainable Development Goals we want to achieve by 2030,” said President Chakrabarti. “The EBRD expects BRI investment in infrastructure to boost growth in the Central Asian countries and “provided Belt and Road investments meet the highest standards, such progress will translate very quickly into real improvements in people’s lives and wellbeing.The EBRD is the largest single investor in Central Asia with a total investment of 14 billion dollars to date. Through its network of local offices the Bank has built a strong presence in the region which combines financing with policy reform.For instance, the EBRD is financing wind and solar power in Kazakhstan and Mongolia, providing credit lines and empowering female entrepreneurs in Tajikistan, piloting a cultural heritage program in Uzbekistan to promote sustainable tourism, enhancing access to health care in the Kyrgyz Republic and helping small businesses in Turkmenistan.Meanwhile, the EBRD plans to step up its cooperation with China and the European Union (EU) in order to deliver increased levels of high-quality investment in Central Asia and beyond.The EBRD made this commitment during a meeting attended by EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti, the European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, and the Deputy Governor of the People’s Bank of China, Chen Yulu, at the Central Asia Investment Forum in Beijing on November 14.At that meeting, the three parties reportedly agreed to work to increase both the quantity and the quality of investments, in line with the priorities of the countries involved. They emphasized the need for sustainable investment with market-oriented partners, with a focus on private sector solutions. Negotiations on Nagorno-Karabakh due at OSCE's Milan meeting Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 14:36:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Leman MammadovaOSCE’s Ministerial Council meeting will be held in Milan on 6-7 December under the Chairmanship of Italy. The event is an important opportunity to assess the security situation in the Euro-Atlantic and Eurasian region and the activities of the organization in other areas.The Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers will meet to negotiate the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict within the meeting.Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry’s acting spokeswoman Leyla Abdullayeva said that Azerbaijan always declared its readiness for meetings with the Armenian foreign minister for the purpose of holding substantive negotiations aimed at achieving result, not only within international events, but also outside their format.The Azerbaijani side supports the proposal of the co-chairs on promoting peace negotiations and inviting Armenia to take a constructive position in this process.The focus on OSCE's role in protracted conflicts in the area of Europe is in the top of Italy’s priorities.The Minsk Group, which seeks for peaceful resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict since 1992, has yet failed to find peace to the long-lasting conflict.There is hope for better results from the meeting in terms of realizing an idea of "reviving the Helsinki spirit", that Italy has voiced in the capacity of OSCE chairman-in-office early 2018. The meeting will particularly focus on the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis, other protracted conflicts, Transnistria, Abkhazia and Ossetia, challenges in the Mediterranean and new transnational threats such as terrorism, cyber security, illegal trafficking and other issues.The last meetings of the Foreign Ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia took place in New York in September and in Brussels in July through mediation of the OSCE Minsk Group. The meetings yielded no result for settlement of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict because of Armenia's non-constructive position. Nasimi Festival to be held in Russia Arts & Entertainment Thu, 15 Nov 2018 14:28:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Laman IsmayilovaNasimi Festival of Poetry, Arts and Spirituality will be held in Russia.The festival named after one of the brilliant poets and thinkers of the East, Imadaddin Nasimi will take place at the Moscow State University and the Institute of Asian and African Studies, Azertag reported.The event is supported by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the Azerbaijani Embassy in Russia.A scientific-practical conference on "Nasimi's spiritual heritage in the historical and cultural context of the Middle Ages in the East" will be held within the festival.Influence of Islamic mysticism on the formation of the humanist outlook of the poet, the literary-philosophical heritage of Nasimi and other topics will be discussed at the conference.The first ever Nasimi Festival of Poetry, Arts, and Spirituality was held in Azerbaijan on September 27-30 being organized by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation and supported by the Azerbaijani Ministry of Culture.The festival was held under the slogans "Beyond the Limited Self", reflecting the philosophical views of the poet, and "I am a Particle, I am the Sun" which are the poet’s lines.Exhibitions, installations, video projections, fashion show, concerts were organized as part of the festival.The project was implemented on an international scale with the participation of world-famous singers, philosophers, scientists, who write about spirituality in modern society, as well as professionals, amateurs in this field and young people. Baku Music Academy presents new project Arts & Entertainment Thu, 15 Nov 2018 14:17:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Laman IsmayilovaAbout two years ago, Baku Academy of Music presented a project called "Musical Pause".The author of the project is the artistic director and chief conductor of Baku Military Orchestra, Honored Artist of Azerbaijan Fuad Ibrahimov.Within the framework of the project, the orchestra performs at various venues of the city.Marvelous concerts have already been held at some universities and streets in Baku.Most importantly, people do not need to buy tickets to listen to this music.Anyone can visit the concert, its announcement is spread on social networks.Every day there is a huge number of new songs of different musical genres, and some do not even think about academic music, which is so beautiful and useful. So, the project aims to fill this gap, and make music accessible to everyone.A concert at National Art Museum aroused great interest among music lovers.The event was attended by famous cultural figures, including People’s Artist of Azerbaijan, rector of Baku Academy of Music Farhad Badalbeyli, Deputy Minister of Culture Sevda Mamedaliyeva and others.The quality of  musical performance is important as well. Thus, the orchestra includes young talented musicians, as well as such well-known virtuosos like the honored artist, violinist Rovshan Amrakhov.The concert program was perfectly selected. There were works by composers whose names are widely known, but which, unfortunately, are very rarely listened to.For example, Uzeyir Mammadov brilliantly performed on harpsichord. Aria, performed at the concert was rarely included in the repertoire of concerts. Talented musicians delighted the audience.The response to the endless applause was the encore Dance from the ballet "Path of Thunder" by Gara Garayev.The music of the Azerbaijani composer, beloved by many, also caused delight and joy among those who have long wanted to hear it in live performance. Uzbek bank shows 'uncompromising' new website, by famous Russian designer World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 14:01:00 +0400 By  TrendUzbekistan’s "Orient Finans Bank" presented a new website created by the studio of a famous Russian designer Artemy Lebedev, the press service of the Uzbek bank said.The bank noted that the new site was the first project of a designer in Uzbekistan.The new website of the bank is accessible here.According to Olga Pismerova, project manager at the studio, modern banking trends and principles that simplify the life of a customer were taken into account when creating the product. The information on the website is presented in such a way that a customer can go from acquaintance with the bank to the main goal step-by-step, leaving a request for the necessary service.“In the end, the client does not need a loan, he needs a car, an apartment, or he needs to organize a wedding of his son. Therefore, we have built the narrative in such a way that from the very beginning it gives real examples of desires that the bank helps to fulfill,” Pismerova noted.Russian designer Artemy Lebedev, in turn, called the site progressive, versatile and multifunctional.“We had been working on the project for a year. This implies serious amount of work. I consider the site absolutely uncompromising,” Lebedev said. Chile eyes to open embassy in Azerbaijan Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:58:00 +0400 By  TrendChile intends to open an embassy in Azerbaijan, acting spokesperson of the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry Leyla Abdullayeva told Trend on Nov. 15.According to a diplomatic note addressed to the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry by the Foreign Ministry of Chile, the embassy of Chile will open in Baku soon as a sign of the importance attached to the development of bilateral relations. Georgia’s presidential elections runoff scheduled for November 28 World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:42:00 +0400 By  TrendThe second round of Georgia’s presidential elections will be held on November 28 by the decision of the Central Election Commission announced yesterday, reports.Wednesday, November 28 has been declared a public holiday in Georgia.Voters will have to decide between the independent candidate supported by the Georgian Dream ruling party Salome Zourabichvili and Grigol Vashadze, the candidate of ten opposition parties who came second in the first round of the presidential elections.3,637 polling stations will open on the election day for voters around Georgia and 57 polling stations abroad.3,504,082 people are included in the voters list in Georgia and 13,795 registered abroad - 3,518,877 voters in total.Georgians living abroad will be able to vote until 12 am since the second round of the presidential elections will be held on a weekday. Turkmenistan launches manufacture of Lipton products World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:28:00 +0400 By  TrendThe local enterprise in Turkmenistan "Akda? miwe içgileri" has launched manufacture of products under the Lipton trademark, the Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs of Turkmenistan said in a statement.The beverage is made in two varieties - black tea with raspberry and peach flavors. The capacity of the production line is 45,000 units of 0.5-liter plastic bottles per hour.It is also planned to launch the production of green Lipton Ice tea with flavors of grapefruit and lemon.The "Akda? miwe içgileri" enterprise is the exclusive distributor of Unilever company in Turkmenistan, which owns the Lipton trademark, distributed in more than 150 countries around the world. President Aliyev receives International Paralympic Committee's president Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:16:00 +0400 By  TrendPresident of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received President of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Andrew Parsons. Kyrgyz companies take part in China International Import Expo 2018 World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:13:00 +0400 By  TrendChina International Import Expo 2018, the 1st international Chinese exhibition of import goods and services, was held in Shanghai from 5 to 10 November, reports.Five companies from Kyrgyzstan took part in it with the support of the ITC (International Trade Center) program “Trade Promotion in Kyrgyzstan”, funded by the Government of Switzerland. These are the Dayry Association of Craftsmen, Tumar, the Saima art group, the Bukon art studio and Dilbar fashion house.The total exhibition area exceeded 240 thousand square meters. The last achievements of 172 countries, regions and international organizations from five continents, as well as goods and services of 3,600 companies, were presented at the Expo. At the same time, the total number of visitors to the exhibition, as stated by the organizers, reached about 400 thousand people.Head of Dilbar fashion house Dilbar Ashimbayeva told that the event itself made an indelible impression on the participants from Kyrgyzstan.“The scale of the exhibition was huge, it was held under the patronage of the President, with large-scale advertising, a very serious level of organization, with great attention from the government and the business community of China. We received a very good response, we showed ourselves to a lot of people. China is a huge comprehensive market in which there is a customer for each product. And we, of course, would like to find our place there. Without the help of ITC, this would have been almost impossible to do. We dreamed about China for so many years, but we didn’t know how to get there. And it was this exhibition that gave us this opportunity,” Dilbar Ashimbayeva said.The designer also said that exhibitors from Kyrgyzstan managed to establish contacts with various companies, and plans for future cooperation appeared. So, one of the best companies in China that produces cashmere products of the best quality was very interested in Kyrgyz companies. And in the future, the fashion house plans to create a joint collection with them. Banks of Uzbekistan to finance poultry projects World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:45:00 +0400 By  TrendThe poultry production clusters will be established in all regions of Uzbekistan for breeding of poultry, processing of poultry products, manufacturing of final finished products and delivering them to consumers, reported.The program of establishment of the clusters using advanced foreign experience will be scheduled for 2019-2021, the first 13 clusters should be opened next year, says the order of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on the development of poultry farming in the country dated November 13.The document is aimed at stable provision of the population with affordable poultry products and enhancement of the export potential of Uzbekistan in this area.In accordance with the order, the state will increase its stake in the authorized capital of Uzpromstroybank by $50 million at the expense of resources of the Fund for Reconstruction and Development of Uzbekistan.A part of these funds will be allocated as loans to other commercial banks in order to finance poultry development projects at a preferential interest rate. The banks are also instructed to take measures in order to attract the resources of international financial institutions and foreign banks for financing of the poultry projects. Azerbaijani president views redevelopment, construction work around Tazapir mosque Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:39:00 +0400 By  TrendPresident of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has inspected progress of re-development and construction work carried out as part of measures to improve the road and transport infrastructure around Tazapir mosque, Yasamal district, Baku. Expro wins four-year contract extension for Shah Deniz Stage 2 Business Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:39:00 +0400 By  TrendLeading international oilfield services company, Expro, has strengthened the opening of its new purpose-built facilities in Baku, winning a four-year contract extension for BP’s Shah Deniz Stage 2 project, the company told Trend.The contract extension will see Expro continue its provision of subsea landing string equipment and services to the project in the South Caspian Sea, according to the company.In 2014, Expro secured a five-year contract for the project, providing its Landing String Assembly – High Pressure (ELSA-HP) 15k valves in conjunction with its EXPRESS electro hydraulic control systems. These are designed to ensure the highest standards of safety and reliability for the most challenging deepwater market conditions.“To support this major contract and expand its portfolio in the region, Expro has invested in a new purpose-built facility, which is opening today (November 15th). The $5 million facility will house 30 employees, encompassing both office and workshop space over 8,500 m2. It will allow Expro to provide integrated subsea services to clients in the region, with the capacity to expand further core areas of the business,” said Expro.“The investment in our new facilities allows us to grow our presence and deliver the highest quality of subsea services to major clients, including BP. It also allows us to broaden our portfolio offering, leveraging our leading global expertise in well testing and intervention services,” said Neil Sims, Expro’s Vice President for Europe CIS region. “Our key stakeholders are critical to our success and I would like to thank our employees for their significant contribution to date, alongside our customers, suppliers and broader partners in Azerbaijan. We look forward to continuing our success and delivering an even stronger business for the future.”The Shah Deniz Stage 2 project is set to bring gas directly from Azerbaijan to Europe for the first time, opening up the Southern Gas Corridor.In total 16 billion cubic meters a year of Shah Deniz Stage 2 gas will be delivered through more than 3500 kilometers of pipelines through Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria, Albania and under the Adriatic Sea to Italy. TAP finalises Maintenance Agreement Talks with Albgaz/Snam JV Business Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:24:00 +0400 By  TrendOn 14 November 2018, Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) signed a Letter of Intent, marking the final stages of negotiation of the Maintenance Agreement talks between TAP and Albgaz Sh.a and Snam S.p.a. – a joint venture that will establish a special purpose entity to act as the maintenance service provider for the Trans Adriatic Pipeline on the territory of Albania, said a message from TAP AG.The finalisation of the talks was celebrated in a ceremony attended by Damian Gjiknuri, the Minister of Infrastructure and Energy in Albania, members of the Albanian Parliament, Albgaz, Snam, as well as TAP management. Participants also included representatives from the diplomatic corps and other key stakeholders.TAP Managing Director Luca Schieppati said: “I am very pleased to be here today to mark another step forward in putting further pieces of this strategic infrastructure in place, bringing us to a successful start of operations in 2020. TAP is proud to be contributing to the development of the Albanian gas market. We look forward to supporting and working together with the soon to be established maintenance service provider”.Albgaz, the Albanian gas transmissions system operator, was established shortly after the signing of the amended Host Government Agreement between the Albanian Government and TAP - Snam being one of the most experienced gas Transmission System Operators in Europe. TAP is confident that the Albgaz/Snam JV established special purpose entity will ensure the safe and efficient maintenance of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline in Albania, following first gas in 2020.TAP worth 4.5 billion euros is a part of the Southern Gas Corridor, which is one of the priority energy projects for the European Union. The project envisages transportation of gas from Azerbaijan's Shah Deniz Stage 2 to the EU countries.The pipeline will connect to the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) on the Turkish-Greek border, run through Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Italy’s south.TAP will be 878 kilometers in length (Greece 550 kilometers, Albania 215 kilometers, Adriatic Sea 105 kilometers, and Italy 8 kilometers).TAP’s shareholding is comprised of BP (20 percent), SOCAR (20 percent), Snam S.p.A. (20 percent), Fluxys (19 percent), Enagás (16 percent) and Axpo (5 percent). MEP Theocharous exchanged European values for extremism: expert Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:15:00 +0400 By  TrendThe European Parliament Member Eleni Theocharous has exchanged European values ??for extremism and separatism, head of SES Media Holding, political expert Bahruz Guliyev told Trend Nov. 14.He said the Azerbaijani public knows Theocharous very well."The member of the European Parliament from Cyprus, known to many people for her unlawful visit to the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, for being included to Azerbaijan's list of undesirable persons and for a criminal case against her under the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan, has made a hype again," the expert noted."This time, Theocharous, because of her speech full of extremism and hatred, and threatening the Albanian constitution, security and order in that country, was declared an undesirable person by the joint decision of the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Albania, he said.“The extremist, nationalist speech of the MEP containing territorial claims against the southern lands of Albania was regarded by Albania as an attempt to violate its territorial integrity and constitution, and a decision was made - of course, this decision of Albania is not surprising,” Guliyev said.Guliyev added that Theocharous can get the “status” of the first member of the European Parliament placed on an international wanted list based on appeals from a number of countries.“It is also worth adding that Eleni Theocharous has close ties with Kaspar Karampetyan, who is involved in diamond trading. It is clear that Theocharous has exchanged the European values for extremism and separatism, and the philosophy of her political activities is to spread extremism on the European continent," the expert added. Lev Spivak: Nobody to destroy what Israeli Defense Minister Lieberman built World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 11:51:00 +0400 By  TrendNobody will destroy what Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has built, head of the Israel-Azerbaijan International Association AzIz Lev Spivak told Trend on Nov. 14.He was commenting on the resignation of the Israeli defense minister because of disagreement with the decision on a ceasefire regime in the Gaza Strip.Spivak said that Lieberman’s resignation in the current situation was absolutely expected.“Just imagine that 400 rockets suddenly fall on you in two days from the neighboring country to which you have recently donated $15 million in cash, and in response you received such a “gift”,” he said.“As far as I know Lieberman’s position as a politician, as a person, and, not to mention his position as minister of defense, he had no other options than resignation after the authorities announced the truce with the Palestinian militants,” Spivak said.He added that it would be difficult to replace Lieberman because not every politician, and even a professional military man, would agree to take the post of defense minister in the current circumstances.Spivak stressed that no matter who will be appointed Israeli defense minister, Lieberman’s resignation will not lead to changes in military-technical cooperation with Azerbaijan or the rejection of any contracts."Everyone understands the importance of this cooperation,” he said. “Over the past years, Lieberman managed to bring the importance of ties with Azerbaijan to almost all Knesset members’ attention. Nobody will destroy what Lieberman has built because everyone understands that this is good and right."The armistice agreement between Israel and Palestine was concluded on Nov. 13 after severe aggravation of the conflict since 2014.“In response, Lieberman announced about his resignation and called the truce and the beginning of negotiations with HAMAS ‘capitulation to terror’,” he added."Lieberman added that ‘now, as a country, we are buying short-term rest, and long-term harm to national security will be the payment for this’," Spivak said.In turn, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that he agreed to HAMAS proposal for ceasefire as it is necessary to make "difficult but correct decisions".Netanyahu said that "the enemies begged for ceasefire," BBC Russian Service reported.On Nov. 12-13, the Palestinians fired 460 missiles at Israel, the Israeli military attacked and hit 160 targets in the Gaza Strip. As a result of mutual shelling, eight people were killed. Minsk hosts conference on 25th anniversary of relations between Azerbaijan, Belarus Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 11:35:00 +0400 By  TrendThe Azerbaijani Embassy in Belarus has held a conference dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Belarus, the Embassy said in a statement Nov. 14.The Deputy Chairwoman of the Upper Chamber of the Belarus Parliament Marianna Shchetkina, the Deputy Chairman of the Lower Chamber of the Belarus Parliament Boleslav Pirshtuk and the First Deputy Foreign Minister of Belarus Andrei Yeudachenka made speeches as special guests at the conference.The event was also attended by the ambassadors of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Ukraine to Belarus, Russia's permanent representative to the CIS, the first deputy chairman of the CIS Executive Committee, rectors of leading universities of Belarus, scientists and culture figures, representatives of the public.Opening the event, Ambassador Latif Gandilov described the participation in the conference of high-ranking representatives of the state and government of Belarus as an indicator of great respect for and attention to Azerbaijan.Assessing personal friendly relations between heads of state as an important factor in bilateral relations, Latif Gandilov noted that these relations are a good example of interstate cooperation.The ambassador stressed that the heads of state, thanks to their wise policy, eliminating the difficulties of the transition period, turned their countries into the states that deserve respect in the world, raising the bilateral relations to the level of strategic partnership.The Deputy Chairwoman of the Upper Chamber of the Belarus Parliament Marianna Shchetkina and the Deputy Chairman of the Lower Chamber of the Belarus Parliament Boleslav Pirshtuk noted in their speeches that the relations between the two states in all spheres, including the inter-parliamentary relations, are at a high level.In connection with the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, the embassy also organized a presentation of the book titled "The 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Belarus" and a silver memorial sign.For their merits in the development of relations between Azerbaijan and Belarus, Gandilov awarded the first ambassador of Belarus to Azerbaijan Nikolai Paskevich, the First Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Yeudachenka, and the Head of the Belarus-Azerbaijan Friendship Group in the Parliament of Belarus, Chairperson of the Standing Commission of the Lower Chamber of the Parliament of Belarus for National Security Valentin Mikhnevich with silver memorial signs.For their merits in the development of relations between Azerbaijan and Belarus, other representatives of state agencies and governments of Azerbaijan and Belarus will be awarded with memorial signs.After the event, a reception was arranged for the conference participants. Azerbaijani athletes aim high at FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup Sports Thu, 15 Nov 2018 11:27:00 +0400 By  TrendAzerbaijani gymnast Seymur Jafarov, who performs in pair with gymnast Murad Akbarov, told Trend that they have one goal at the upcoming FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup in Baku - to win the first place.“The training was successful, I liked everything,” said Jafarov. “There were some negative moments, but there is still time to correct them. I hope that we will perform successfully at the World Cup. We are both physically and psychologically ready.”The athlete stressed that responsibility is increasing because the FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup will be held in Azerbaijan for the first time.“It is a great pride when you become a winner in your home country and the flag of your country flies, and, of course, this makes you more responsible,” he said.The FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup will be held for the first time in Baku on November 17-18.Teams of Belarus, Israel, Kazakhstan, India, Russia and Ukraine will participate in the competitions.At this World Cup, Azerbaijan will be represented by bronze medalists of the recent European Championships, Mixed Pairs - Abdulla Al-Mashaykhi - Ruhidil Gurbanli and Aghasif Rahimov - Nurjan Jabbarli.Silver medalists of the World Age Group Competitions (2016) - Seymur Jafarov and Murad Akbarov - will compete for the best places within the Men's Pairs competitions.During the two-day event, gymnasts born in 2003 and older will compete in Men’s Pairs, Women’s Pairs, Mixed Pairs, Women's Groups and Men's Groups competitions.The traditional AGF Trophy Cup will also be presented to Pairs and Groups who get the highest scores at the event. Iran MP: Parliament to consider Guardian Council’s remarks on CFT World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 11:10:00 +0400 By  TrendThe Iranian Guardian Council’s remarks about the Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) bill will be considered in the Iranian Parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, Ardeshir Nourian, a member of the Commission, said in an interview with IRNA.He said the Guardian Council considered the Parliament's decisions, including four FATF bills, whether they are in conformity with Sharia law and the Constitution, and voiced its remarks regarding 23 provisions.Nourian said the Guardian Council’s remarks will be considered on Nov. 18 at an extraordinary session. Over 120,000 people employed in Turkey in October World news Thu, 15 Nov 2018 10:48:00 +0400 By  TrendAs many as 123,870 Turkish citizens were provided with workplaces in Turkey in October 2018, which is 9.2 percent more than in the same period last year, the Turkish Employment Agency (ISKUR) told Trend on Nov. 14.Out of the total number of the employed, 35 percent are women and 65 percent are men, according to ISKUR."Among the jobs provided in October 2018, 99.2 percent accounted for the private sector," ISKUR said."A total of 3.215 million people were registered as unemployed in Turkey in October 2018," ISKUR said, adding that 52 percent of them are women and 48 percent are men. President Aliyev appoints Azerbaijan’s plenipotentiary representative in High-Level Working ... Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 10:38:00 +0400 By  TrendPresident Ilham Aliyev has signed an order appointing Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov as Azerbaijan’s plenipotentiary representative in the High-Level Working Group for the Caspian Sea.The Cabinet of Ministers has been tasked to resolve issues arising from the order.Also the order instructs the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry to send notifications to the Caspian countries that Deputy FM Khalaf Khalafov has been named Azerbaijan’s plenipotentiary representative in the High-Level Working Group for the Caspian Sea.On August 12, 2018, the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea was signed and the Communiqué of the Fifth Caspian Summit was adopted in Aktau.According to these documents, a decision was made to create a mechanism for regular five-sided consultations of plenipotentiaries of the Caspian countries. Thus, under this decision, foreign ministers of the Caspian countries created the High-Level Working Group for the Caspian Sea. Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 26 times Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 10:26:00 +0400 By  TrendOver the past 24 hours, Armenian armed forces have 26 times violated the ceasefire along the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian troops, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said Nov. 15.The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts. Currency rates for Nov. 15 Business Thu, 15 Nov 2018 10:15:00 +0400 By  TrendOfficial exchange rate of the US dollar and euro against Azerbaijani manat was set at 1.7 and 1.9274 manats, respectively, for Nov. 15.Below are the rates of Azerbaijani manat against world currencies, according to the data from the Central Bank of Azerbaijan for Nov. 15.CurrenciesNov. 15, 20181 US dollar1 USD1.71 euro1 EUR1.92741 Australian dollar1 AUD1.23741 Argentine peso1 ARS0.0473100 Belarus rubles100 BYR0.79321 Brazil real1 BRL0.44901 UAE dirham1 AED0.46281 South African rand1 ZAR0.1187100 South Korean won100 KRW0.15071 Czech koruna1 CZK0.07411 Chilean peso1 CLP0.24891 Chinese yuan1 CNY0.24501 Danish krone1 DKK0.25831 Georgian lari1 GEL0.63431 Hong Kong dollar1 HKD0.21711 Indian rupee1 INR0.02361 British pound1 GBP2.2120100 Indonesian rupiah100 IDR0.0115100 Iranian rials100 IRR0.00401 Swedish krona1 SEK0.18761 Swiss franc1 CHF1.69061 Israeli shekel1 ILS0.46061 Canadian dollar1 CAD1.28541 Kuwaiti dinar1 KWD5.59051 Kazakh tenge1 KZT0.00461 Kyrgyz som1 KGS0.0243100 Lebanese pounds100 LBP0.11241 Malaysian ringgit1 MYR0.40591 Mexican peso1 MXP0.08351 Moldovan leu1 MDL0.09951 Egyptian pound1 EGP0.09491 Norwegian krone1 NOK0.2003100 Uzbek soums100 UZS0.02061 Polish zloty1 PLN0.44881 Russian ruble1 RUB0.02541 Singapore dollar1 SGD1.23541 Saudi riyal1 SAR0.45311 SDR (Special Drawing Rights of IMF)1 SDR2.34691 Turkish lira1 TRY0.31121 Taiwan dollar1 TWD0.05511 Tajik somoni1 TJS0.18041 New Turkmen manat1 TMM0.48571 Ukrainian hryvna1 UAH0.0611100 Japanese yen100 JPY1.49811 New Zealand dollar1 NZD1.1566 IMF reveals forecasts for Azerbaijan’s non-oil sector growth Business Thu, 15 Nov 2018 10:00:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Sara Israfilbekova Azerbaijan’s non-oil growth will gradually increase from around two percent today, to about three to four percent by 2023, IMF Mission Chief for Azerbaijan Mohammed El Qorchi, said in an interview with AzerNews.El Qorchi said that the non-oil economy has reported solid growth in the service sector, particularly in the communication, transport and tourism, adding that however, the construction sector is still feeling the effects of the slowdown in public investment."Potential growth in the non-oil economy will be relatively sluggish without implementation of structural reforms. This would include stepping up broad based governance reforms, working to attract non-oil FDI (foreign direct investment), and focusing on greater human capital development through needed investments in health and education. Joining the WTO would help to increase Azerbaijan’s connectivity and expand non-oil exports," he noted.Answering the question on which projects implemented in Azerbaijan does the IMF support the most, the Mission Chief stressed that the Fund has provided technical assistance on the main macroeconomic policy areas."This has included advice and recommendations on monetary and exchange rate policies; fiscal policies, bank supervision; and national income accounting, fiscal, and monetary statistics," El Qorchi said.Further, he noted that the 1.3-percent growth forecast is the best estimate of real GDP growth in 2018 based on available information as of September."Through the first 9 months of this year, growth was 0.8 percent. So, we think our forecast is still in line with current indicators," the Mission Chief explained, adding that in general, economic reforms affect long-term economic growth and take a while to have an impact.In January-September 2018, the volume of GDP produced in the non-oil sector of Azerbaijan increased by 1 percent compared to January-September 2017, while in the oil and gas sector there was an increase of 0.5 percent.During the reporting period, the sphere of transport and storage grew by 7.7 percent, accommodation of tourists and catering - by 7.6 percent, information and communication services - by 7.7 percent. The construction sector decreased by 15.9 percent. President Aliyev: Main problem, if there is problem in CSTO, is Armenia itself and problems it ... Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 09:50:00 +0400 By  TrendThe main problem, if there is a problem in the CSTO, is Armenia itself and the problems it has created, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said.President Aliyev made the remarks at a meeting with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to Azerbaijan Gennady Akhramovich.“Of course, we are observing the situation in our region,” the president added. “We also closely observed the CSTO summit recently held in Kazakhstan. We are not indifferent to this, which I think is quite understandable because Armenia is a country that has occupied the territories of Azerbaijan. Of course, we are not indifferent to the issue of who, a representative of which country, heads the CSTO, which is a military-political organization.”“The discussion of these issues between partners and friends is natural,” President Aliyev added. “We are discussing other issues of international politics. This should not cause any manias in Armenia. We consider the recent statements of the Armenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as completely inadmissible in international practice. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs cannot comment on the actions and words of the president of another country, especially since it is considered an ally, and describe them as being incorrect.”The President said that such behavior of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia is incorrect, as it allows itself such escapades.“Apparently, this is the result of a wrong perception of the world and its own place on the world map. At the same time, as you know, the Armenian side has stated that there is a problem in the CSTO.”“Maybe, they are right in that,” the president said. “First of all, these problems are Armenia itself and the problems it has created. Of course, we were a little wary of the appointment of a representative of Armenia to the post of secretary general of the CSTO. First, because this state conducts a hostile policy against Azerbaijan, and second, due to the identity of the candidate who was prosecuted for his actions. We have no doubt, so to speak, about the qualities this character possessed and still possesses.”“Suffice it to recall his shameful behavior during the battles between the Azerbaijani and Armenian armies, which ended in a bitter defeat for the Armenian army, the army led by the former CSTO secretary general,” he added. “In other words, the very appointment of this person to such an important international organization as the CSTO somewhat discredited the organization. And the way this man was expelled with criminal prosecution is quite unique in international practice when an international clerk was brought to justice like that without sending any notification to member countries. So, I want to say again that the main problem, if there is a problem in the CSTO, is Armenia itself and the problems it has created.” President Aliyev: Azerbaijan buys military equipment from Belarus and this causes psychosis ... Politics Thu, 15 Nov 2018 09:45:00 +0400 By  TrendAzerbaijan buys military equipment from Belarus and this has been causing psychosis fits in Armenia, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said.President Aliyev made the remarks at a meeting with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to Azerbaijan Gennady Akhramovich.“We buy military equipment from Belarus and are very pleased with its quality and performance,” the president said. “Belarus demonstrates a very high level in the sphere of military industry as well, and we intend to continue cooperating in the military-technical field. As you know, however, this has been causing psychosis fits in Armenia, so to speak, which is extremely surprising because Azerbaijan buys weapons not only from Belarus.”“The biggest supplier of military equipment to Azerbaijan is Russia,” he added. “We also acquire large quantities of weapons and equipment from Turkey, Israel, Pakistan and European countries. It is therefore surprising that claims are leveled exclusively against Belarus.”“I believe that this is a manifestation of an inferiority complex in Armenia in relation to Belarus, and the reasons are quite simple – both Belarus and Armenia gained independence at the same time,” President Aliyev added. “Today, Armenia is one of the poorest countries in the world, it is at the very bottom, and vivid evidence of that is the fact that the government, which exploited its people and looted it for 20 years, has been swept away by the Armenian people.”“In the meantime, Belarus, despite the sanctions imposed on it earlier, has successfully developed, and this is the result of the wise policy of President of Belarus Alexander Grigoryevich Lukashenko,” he said. “Belarus has become a powerful state with a developed industry, a developed agriculture and a high level of social protection. As someone who has often visited your country, I say this completely objectively and sincerely. Therefore, it seems to us that the unfounded claims that are being voiced to your country by Armenia are based precisely on this factor.” Slovak PM completes official visit to Azerbaijan Politics Wed, 14 Nov 2018 20:52:00 +0400 By  TrendPrime Minister of the Slovak Republic Peter Pellegrini ended his official visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan on Nov. 14.A guard of honor was lined up for the Slovak prime minister at the Heydar Aliyev International Airport decorated with the national flags of the two countries.Pellegrini was seen off by Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan Ali Ahmadov and other officials. Russian companies eye supplying LNG to Thailand World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 18:00:00 +0400 By  TrendRussian companies are interested in supplying liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the Thai market, Russian Energy Ministry’s press service reported with reference to Minister Alexander Novak on Wednesday, TASS reports."The operations of the group (Russian-Thai bilateral working group - TASS) make it possible to coordinate the work on joint projects in all areas of the fuel and energy sector. Russian energy resources - oil, petroleum products and coal - are delivered stably to Thailand. Considering the great importance of natural gas for Thailand’s power generation, as well as considering the growth of gas consumption, Russian companies are interested in organizing the supplies of liquefied natural gas to Thailand’s market," Novak was quoted as saying.The minister also considers the construction of power generation facilities in Thailand a promising cooperation area for Russian companies.The two countries boast a long track record of energy cooperation, the ministry added. Russian company can get impressive stake in Uzbekugol World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:44:00 +0400 By  TrendThe Russian Progress Gor Tech company can receive in trust the shares of Uzbekugol JSC, reported.The draft presidential decree on measures to improve the effectiveness of the Uzbekugol joint-stock company has been published on the portal for discussion of draft legal and regulatory documents.The Uzbekistan Railways JSC will transfer 45 percent of shares in the authorized capital of Uzbekugol JSC to the Russian Progress Gor Tech company for the period of three years, the decree says. At the same time, the agreement on trust management can be extended in case of reaching the parameters of the business plan.The Progress Gor Tech company will establish a subsidiary company in Uzbekistan, which will manage the stock of shares of Uzbekugol JSC.During the period of the trust management, the Uzbekugol will retain its organizational and legal form as a joint stock company. Uzbekistan eyes to reform aviation sector World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:35:00 +0400 By  TrendIt is proposed to restructure the National Air Company "Uzbekistan Airways" OJSC in Uzbekistan, reported.The draft presidential decree on measures to promote tourism in Uzbekistan in the period up to 2025 has been published on the portal for discussion of draft legal and regulatory documents.The measures for development of the national civil aviation system are proposed in the draft decree.In particular, the authors of the decree propose restructuring the national air company into several competing companies that would allow for dividing duties between the areas of aviation, management of airports and the aviation regulatory body.Also, the measures will be taken to improve the competitiveness of the national air company, in particular by improving the service, quality and quantity of multimedia services in various languages ??on board, by organizing the serving of national dishes, by conducting a more flexible pricing policy, by expanding the use of online services for booking and buying of air tickets.Uzbekistan plans to increase the number of foreign airline companies operating regular flights to and from regions of the country by introducing the "Open Skies" regime on the territory of some international airports of the country with the involvement of low-cost airline companies.These measures will help increase the competitiveness of the national air company and to increase the flow of foreign tourists, as well as to reduce the tariffs for air transport services, the draft decree reads. Iran will not change its policy under pressure from sanctions World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:27:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Abdul KerimkhanovAmerican company will supply agricultural equipment to Turkmenistan.The signing of a relevant memorandum between the government of Turkmenistan and American company John Deere International Gmbh took place on November 12.President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov held a working meeting on the development of sectors of the national economy and the socio-cultural sphere, as well as the progress in the implementation of comprehensive reform programs.During the meeting, the Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers Orazgeldiev spoke about the seasonal agricultural work carried out in the country. At present, according to him, cotton picking continues in the welayats, the necessary agrotechnical measures are being taken to take care of winter wheat crops.The technical park of the domestic agro-industrial complex is regularly updated. The relevant memorandum was signed between the government of Turkmenistan and American company John Deere International Gmbh, the deputy prime minister said.After hearing the report, the head of state instructed to implement projects on expanding existing and building new reservoirs, other hydraulic structures, including desalination plants at places of demand for it, as well as introducing modern methods of irrigation into agricultural production, advanced technologies of rational water use, improvement of land reclamation state.He also instructed to accelerate the collection of cotton in the fields and pay attention to the storage conditions of the harvested crop.The total trade and economic turnover of Turkmenistan and the U.S. in the first half of 2018 has increased by more than 27 percent. Some 156 projects totaling more than $2.5 billion have already been implemented in Turkmenistan with the participation of U.S. companies.In January-July 2018, the trade turnover between the U.S. and Turkmenistan amounted to $ 18 million. During this period, U.S. exports totaled $ 11.7 million, while imports of products from the Central Asian country made only $ 6.3 million. In 2017, the total trade turnover reached $ 282.2 million.The American companies operate on the Turkmen market in such areas as transportation, the fuel and energy complex, construction of power plants, sphere of telecommunications, software support, and the food industry. Iran warns over gasoline smuggling by fuel card abuse World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:17:00 +0400 By  TrendNational Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company(NIOPDC) has warned over possible misuse of fuel cards for smuggling gasoline, Tasnim reported quoting the company's statement.The government seeks to confront the gasoline traffic by creating more strict rules on use of fuel cards that are currently being bought and sold multiple times. Iran's economic downturn has led the card owners to sell their cards to smugglers."Considering the capacities of fuel card system there is no possibility that a person can use two cards", the NIOPDC statement added.The fuel card program was launched to subsidized gasoline quotas to car owners as a means to curb consumption, adjusting prices and cutting down fuel smuggling."To issue a replacement card, the owner must file for a lost card first and demand for the replica of the old card to be canceled and then the process of issuing a new card begins", said the statement.Due to low value of fuel, some file for replacement card to use it alongside the original fuel card to purchase more gasoline and sell it to smugglers.More than one billion liters (roughly 265,000 gallons) of gasoline have been smuggled out of Iran in the past few months, Reuters quoted Iran's anti-smuggling police chief IRGC Briadier-General Ali Moayyedi saying in October 10. Uzbekistan to direct over half of budget expenditures to social sector World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:00:00 +0400 By  TrendOn Nov.13, execution of the Uzbek state budget for the first nine months of this year and the draft state budget for 2019 were discussed at the expanded meeting of the Committee of the Legislative Chamber of the Uzbek Parliament on Labor and Social Affairs, Uzbek media reported.The Uzbek MPs noted that “due to changes in consumer prices,” real growth rates of the total income of the population compared to the same period last year amounted to 111.4 percent (110.6 percent for the first nine months of 2017, according to the Uzbek State Statistics Committee), and the real growth rate of the total income per capita amounted to 109.5 percent (108.8 percent for the same period of 2017).In the reporting period, funds in the amount of 53.4 percent of total expenditures were spent to finance social expenditures from the state budget. These expenditures amounted to 11.8 percent of the GDP. As much as 19 trillion soums, or almost 65.8 percent of the funds allocated to the social sphere and social support of the population, were allocated to financing salary and deductions for salary payments.Considering the draft budget for 2019, as well as the budget policy goals for 2019-2021, the Uzbek MPs discussed improving the housing and social conditions of the population, the system of social support, achieving sustainable economic growth and the creation of new jobs.In 2019, 54 percent of the state budget expenditures will be directed to these goals while maintaining the priority of funds for the social sphere and social support of the population. It is planned to allocate 57.8 trillion soums for social expenditures in 2019.(8,271.27 soums = 1 USD on Nov. 14) Azerbaijani oil prices decrease Business Wed, 14 Nov 2018 16:47:00 +0400 By  TrendThe price of the AZERI LT CIF oil, produced at the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli block of oil and gas fields, amounted to $68.2 per barrel at the Italian port of Augusta on Nov. 13, or $3.95 less than on Nov. 12, a source in Azerbaijan's oil and gas market told Trend Nov. 14.The AZERI Light FOB Ceyhan oil price was $67.14 per barrel on Nov. 13, or $3.98 less than on Nov. 12.Azerbaijan has been producing AZERI LT since 1997 and exports it via the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and Baku-Supsa pipelines, as well as by rail to the Georgian port of Batumi.Azerbaijan also exports URALS oil from Russia’s Black Sea port of Novorossiysk. The oil is delivered there via the Baku-Novorossiysk pipeline.The price for URALS-NOVO was $63.25 per barrel on Nov. 13, or $4.02 less than the previous price.The price for a barrel of Brent Dated, produced from the North Sea, stood at $65.07 on Nov. 13, or $3.95 less than the previous price. Azerbaijan’s Central Bank to auction notes worth 250M manats Business Wed, 14 Nov 2018 16:35:00 +0400 By  TrendOn Nov. 14, the Baku Stock Exchange (BSE) will hold an auction to place short-term notes of the Central Bank of Azerbaijan worth 250 million manats, the BSE announced.Two and half million notes at a par value of 100 manats each and with a maturity period of 28 days will be put up for sale at the auction. The maturity date of the notes is December 12, 2018.Under requirements, each bank can submit maximum two applications – one competitive and one noncompetitive.Short-term notes are a monetary policy instrument to regulate the money supply in circulation. Only banks can purchase notes.(1 USD = 1.7 AZN on Nov. 14) World-famous stars to gather on the Caspian seashore Arts & Entertainment Wed, 14 Nov 2018 16:16:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Laman IsmayilovaProgram of one of the most expected festivals of summer months, Zhara-2019, has been announced.Four days, greatest hits, star parties and numerous surprises await you at the festival.World-famous starts will once again gather on the Caspian seashore to celebrate an unforgettable feast of music.The summer festival  will take place at the Sea Breeze recreation center on July 25-28, Trend Life reported.The opening of the festival will take place on July 25 with a gala concert, at which famous artists will perform their hits.Pop stars of 90's will delight music lovers on July 26.Best singers of the 2000s will perform on July 27, while the most fashionable young artists will close the festival on July 28.The third festival ZHARA was held on July 26-29, 2018 at the beautiful resort of the country's capital Sea Breeze. Popular pop stars from Azerbaijan, Russia, Ukraine, Italy, U.S., Kazakhstan, Moldova and other countries took part in it. During the four days of the festival more than 250 artists performed on the stage.ZHARA is an international music festival that takes place every summer in Baku, on the coast of the Caspian Sea. Four days of concerts, painted in unique sunset colors, star parties and film premieres, as well as tens of thousands of spectators and millions of viewers.The festival venue accommodates 10,000 attendees at once. Specially for the festival, a stage is set right on the seashore, striking in its size and equipped with various video installations.Russian, Azerbaijani and foreign performers take part in the festival. The hours-long concert program is accompanied by original choreographic productions, light and video shows, powerful sound and bright decorations.Every year, more than 90 artists, showbiz stars and celebrities walk the red carpet, which is traditionally held before the beginning of the concert. The event is broadcast live on AzTV.The event organizers are People’s Artist of Azerbaijan Emin Agalarov (EMIN), Honored Artist of Russia Grigory Leps, founder of the Russian Radio and Golden Gramophone Prize Sergey Kozhevnikov. U.S. eyes to increase pressure on Iran to prevent oil exports World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 16:05:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Leman MammadovaThe United States will further increase its pressure on Iran to prevent oil exports. U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton stated that the main target is to reduce oil exports of Iran to zero."Now, our intentions are to put more pressure on them," he said.According to the first phase of sanctions imposed in August, Iran is banned from using U.S. dollars in trade operations, acquiring passenger aircrafts and importing their parts. Foreign companies are also banned to invest in Iran's auto industry. More than 700 Iranian individuals, entities, aircraft and ships were placed on List of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Parties administered by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.  Over 300 of these designations are new targets, while the remaining ones are reinstated following their removal pursuant to the JCPOA.In fact, all the sanctions are directed against energy, shipping, auto industries, trade area and financial transactions. The sanctions will also be applied to third countries. The main target of new sanctions is the Iranian National Oil Company, the Iranian Oil Trading Company and the National Tanker Company. The sale of oil and oil products from Iran will be banned.But, what will be the impact of these sanctions on Azerbaijan?As Iran is a close neighbor of Azerbaijan, large-scale tension is an undesirable situation for the region.Washington seeks to stop the oil export from Iran completely. However, Azerbaijan imports gas, not oil from Iran. Although 8 countries, including Turkey, have been partly excluded from the sanctions on oil and gas imports from Iran. The exact scale of sanctions has not been determined. In August, Washington clearly stated that the Shahdeniz and the Southern Gas Corridor were free from sanctions against Iran, although Azerbaijan has not been included in this list.Azerbaijan can benefit from sanctions due to higher oil prices in the world market as a result of sanctions on oil imports from Iran.Richard Kauzlarich, Professor at Schar's School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, told BBC News Azerbaijan that the exclusion of the Shah Deniz project involving the Iranian state oil company has not seriously differed from the previous position of the United States, but said that future projects in Azerbaijan will not be protected from sanctions.           On May 8, Trump announced that the United States abandoned the nuclear deal with Iran. Trump criticized the nuclear agreement signed during the presidency of Barack Obama by saying that it was weak and met Iran’s interests. The U.S. President condemned Iran over uranium enrichment and banned arms production in violation of the terms of the agreement. In addition, Trump said he intends to restore sanctions against Iran.On November 5, sanctions imposed by Donald Trump administration against Iran came into force. This is the second phase of the sanctions that began in August.At the time, the U.S. has restored large-scale sanctions that have been ceased as a result of agreeing to a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on Tehran's nuclear program.Iran’s nuclear agreement was signed in October 2015 and came into force in early 2016 to lift sanctions against Iran. Instead, Iran has agreed to be monitored by the international community in the nuclear industry, and has promised to develop only nuclear energy. However, Donald Trump decided to withdraw from the agreement after he was elected president of the United States.Despite the discontent of the Trump administration, other countries that have signed the agreement are reluctant to impose new sanctions on Iran. China, Russia and Turkey, have already said they will continue to trade with Iran. Only Korean, Japanese and Indian companies stated they would gradually reduce trade relations with Iran. The Joint Statement by the Foreign Ministers of the European Union, Britain, France and Germany states that the nuclear agreement has been worked out as intended and "fulfills its purpose".  New Azerbaijani wine and trading houses to be opened in China Business Wed, 14 Nov 2018 16:03:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Narmina MammadovaThe opening of trading houses is one of the significant events carried out within the framework of expanding the export of Azerbaijani products.Azerbaijan can export more agricultural products to China, including cotton, tobacco, grapes, as well as aluminum and chemical products, Azerbaijani Minister of Economy Shahin Mustafayev said in an interview with the Chinese newspaper Global Times.“We have taken a series of measures to increase the volume of mutual trade with China. In particular, at the end of last year, the trade representative of Azerbaijan in China was appointed. In September of this year, we opened a wine house in Urumqi, a trading house in Luzhou, and another wine house in the Shanghai free trade zone. Azerbaijani goods are also available at DIG supermarkets and will soon be sold at G-Super supermarkets in Shanghai,” the minister said.He added that Azerbaijan will continue to open trade and wine houses in China.Mustafayev also touched upon the issues of investment cooperation, noting that Chinese companies have invested $ 800 million in the economy of Azerbaijan, and 112 companies with Chinese capital operate in the country.The minister went on to say that Azerbaijan is also taking permanent measures to improve the business environment in the country. Azerbaijan improved its position by 32 steps and placed at 25th place thanks to the measures taken in the last Doing Business report 2019.“We hope that Chinese companies will be able to take advantage of favorable conditions in Azerbaijan. In turn, the government is ready to support the investments of Chinese companies,” Mustafayev said.The minister noted that China and Azerbaijan can also cooperate in the field of high technologies. As an example, Mustafayev cited the successful work in Azerbaijan of two Chinese IT companies, Huawei and ZTE.Further, the Minister noted the successful cooperation in the tourism sector: for example, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Azerbaijan increased by 62 percent last year."But I think that there is a potential for expanding cooperation in this sphere,"  he added.The two countries are carrying out comprehensive measures to further expand trade cooperation, the Trade Representation of Azerbaijan operates in China, a trade delegation was organized to Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Urumqi in order to promote Azerbaijani products and the Made in Azerbaijan brand in China.Earlier, agreements were reached with a Chinese company selling alcoholic beverages, as they expressed interest in Azerbaijani wines noting their taste and prices. The first Azerbaijan’s Wine House abroad was opened in September this year in China, Urumqi. The country’s second Wine House in China opened in Shanghai on November 8.In Azerbaijan’s Wine House, there were more than 120 types of grape and fruit wines, other alcohol beverages, fruit distillates produced by Azerbaijani companies.The trade house of Azerbaijan was also opened in the Chinese city of Luzhou in late September. Azerbaijan’s trade houses and wine houses are planned to be created in other regions of China as well.China became Azerbaijan’s 4th largest trading partner in 2017. Customs data of Azerbaijan estimated bilateral trade at a record close to $1.3 billion in 2017, up 33 percent from the previous year.Exports of Azerbaijani goods amounted to $433.8 million (3.21 percent of total exports), while imports of Chinese products to Azerbaijan reached $854.5 million (9.73 percent of total imports).In January-September this year, the trade turnover between the two countries amounted to $848.9 million.Since 2017, Azerbaijan has a trade representative in China, which is important for boosting trade relations. About 50 percent of China’s trade with the South Caucasus accounts for Azerbaijan.The main export products from Azerbaijan to China last year were chemical products, fuel, and plastics. From China to Azerbaijan over the past year were imported electric equipment, vehicles and spare parts, clothing, ceramic products, household items.There are over 100 Chinese companies operating in trade, services, industry, construction and other spheres in Azerbaijan. Mexico's cultural heritage presented in Baku Arts & Entertainment Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:52:00 +0400 By AzernewsBy Laman IsmayilovaAn exhibition "Mexico in the World Heritage" solemnly opened at Art Tower Gallery on November 7.The event was organized by the Embassy of Mexico in Azerbaijan and NGO Art Council Azerbaijan as part of the Festival of Cultural Heritage "Fantazia", Trend Life reported.Addressing the event, Mexican Ambassador to the country Juan Rodrigo Labardini and head of the Arts Council Azerbaijan Dadash Mammadov noted that the exhibition is another bridge of culture between nations and stressed the importance of preserving historical sites that are part of the history and memory of countries. The project aims to raise awareness about the importance of the preservation of historic sites as an important part of the history and collective memory of the country.Nineteen photographs were presented at the exhibition by Mexican photographer Adalberto Rios Szalay, which shows Mexican sites that have been designated by UNESCO as World Heritage.It is important to note that in terms of Universal Heritage, Mexico ranks 7th in the world with 35 sites that are recognized as World Heritage, 27 of them are cultural, 6 natural and 2 are mixed. These sites are an undoubted tourist attraction, since more than 39 million tourists visit them every year to appreciate its great wealth and its historical and cultural legacy of worldwide relevance.The exhibition will remain open to the public until November 10.Notably, the Festival of Cultural Heritage "Fantaziya" took place in Baku on November 1-10 as part of the Year of Cultural Heritage in Europe.Various concert programs, seminars, tours, film screenings, exhibitions and a number of other events  were held during the festival.The event  was organized by the European Union Office in Azerbaijan in cooperation with the embassies of Germany, France, Greece, Poland, Croatia, the Netherlands and Hungary, with the participation of diplomatic missions of Mexico, Moldova and Morocco and the support of United Cultures. Deputy minister: Azerbaijan starts organizing buying missions Business Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:45:00 +0400 By  TrendAzerbaijan has started organizing buyers missions, Deputy Economy Minister of Azerbaijan Rufat Mammadov said at a briefing in Baku on Nov. 14.The deputy minister noted that the rules on the organization of buying missions are reflected in the relevant document approved by the Azerbaijani government and the presence of such a document is important for implementation of this mechanism."We are already implementing them and periodically organize import missions through our trade missions in various countries. The trade missions of Azerbaijan determine potential foreign importers, conduct negotiations with them, after which their mission is sent to Azerbaijan. In turn, the Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO) accepts these missions in Azerbaijan and organizes bilateral meetings with local producers," Mammadov said.During 2018, as the deputy minister said, a number of import missions were organized from Poland, China, Russia and the UAE."That is, even in the absence of mechanisms, we have already begun to organize import missions," Mammadov added. Head Coach: Azerbaijani athletes ready for FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup in Baku Sports Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:36:00 +0400 By  TrendAzerbaijani athletes are well prepared for the upcoming FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup in Baku, head coach of the Azerbaijani national team in acrobatic gymnastics Irada Gurbanova told Trend.“Azerbaijan at the FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup in Baku will be represented by six athletes - four male and two female athletes,” she said. “These are three pairs - two mixed and one male pair. I think that our gymnasts are ready for the Cup by 98 percent, and the remaining 2 percent always include unpredictable moments. They are well prepared, for us this program is new, we started to work on it only this year.”She noted that the main rivals of the Azerbaijani gymnasts at the upcoming World Cup are athletes from Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan.“But we will make a serious competition,” she added.Gurbanova stressed that great attention is paid to the development of sports in Azerbaijan.“We have a wonderful National Gymnastics Arena, a wonderful hall,” she said. “The Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation pays great attention to gymnasts. All the necessary conditions are created for the athletes.”For the first time in Baku, the FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup will be held in the National Gymnastics Arena on November 17-18.Teams of Belarus, Israel, Kazakhstan, India, Russia and Ukraine will participate in the competitions.At this World Cup, Azerbaijan will be represented by bronze medalists of the recent European Championships, Mixed Pairs - Abdulla Al-Mashaykhi - Ruhidil Gurbanli and Aghasif Rahimov - Nurjan Jabbarli.Silver medalists of the World Age Group Competitions (2016) - Seymur Jafarov and Murad Akparov will compete for the best places within the Men's Pair.During the two-day events, gymnasts born in 2003 and older will compete within Men’s Pairs, Women’s Pairs, Mixed Pairs, Women's Groups and Men's Groups.The traditional “AGF Trophy” Cup will also be presented to Pairs and Groups having received the highest scores at the events. Uzbekistan - first in number of labor migrants in Russia World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:27:00 +0400 By  TrendMost labor migrants who entered Russia since the beginning of 2018 came from Uzbekistan, Uzbek media reported.From January to September 2018, more than 3.4 million citizens of Uzbekistan entered Russia, including 1,573,791 people for working purposes. Uzbekistan is followed by Tajikistan, from where 1,745,554 people came to Russia, including 790,116 people for working purposes.Ukraine ranks third (347,272 people entered Russia for employment), and Kyrgyzstan ranks fourth (247,658 people).Foreign citizens more often come for work to Moscow, 1,249,664 labor migrants have been registered in Moscow since the beginning of the year. Also, foreigners came for work to St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region (718,567 people), the Moscow Region (343,508 people), and the Sverdlovsk Region (100,485 people).Other Russia’s regions popular among labor migrants include Krasnodar Krai, Samara Region, Novosibirsk Region, Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Irkutsk Region and Tatarstan Republic. Possibilities of introducing modern technologies in Kyrgyzstan discussed in Bishkek World news Wed, 14 Nov 2018 15:11:00 +0400 By  TrendRepresentatives of the Central Asia International Development, together with business representatives and officials, discussed the possibilities of introducing modern digital technologies in the Kyrgyz market. During the event, the focus was on discussion of the creation of various projects and resources that will not only make life easier for the Kyrgyz people, but also improve the economic situation of the state, reports.Along with this, the question was raised about the possibility of launching Kyrgyz cryptocurrency, which will be tied to the som.“The whole world has been using similar technologies for a long time. We need to transition to cashless settlement, this is a modern trend. As for cryptocurrency, this is a big step forward for the economy. It can be backed not only by the national currency, but also by any resources. The future lies with it,” the event organizers shared.