U.S. Congressman Poe appreciates U.S.-Azerbaijan relations

By Nigar Orujova

The U.S.-Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce (USACC) held a networking dinner with Congressman Ted Poe titled "United States-Azerbaijan Strategic Partnership" in Washington, D.C., on June 25, USACC reported.

The event was held as part of the Congressional Talks Series of USACC.

The briefing was opened by the Executive Director of USACC Susan Sadigova who welcomed the guests, talked about the importance of deepening ties between the United States and Azerbaijan, and presented the keynote speaker.

Congressman Poe thanked USACC for holding the event and talked about the history of U.S. role in protecting the trade around the world.

Moving on to U.S.-Azerbaijan relations, Poe said it was in the mutual interest of United States and Azerbaijan to work together to sell more energy to European market and highlighted the need for United States to work with Azerbaijan in developing the infrastructure to produce more natural gas.

He underlined the new developments in the development of Shah Deniz field, signing of Final Investment Decision (FID) in December 2013 with European partners and noted the significance of the proposed Trans Caspian pipeline.

Poe stated that the Southern Gas Corridor would create 30,000 jobs, 10,000 of which would be the local contracts from Azerbaijan as part of the project. "Energy security means nation's security", said Congressman Poe, stressing the economic advantages of the SGC project.

Next, he talked about other potential areas for cooperation between the two countries drawing the attention to the IT sector as the second biggest industry in Texas after energy and the expertise the state of Texas can provide to Azerbaijan in developing its IT sector.

Congressman Poe commended the recent designation of Category 1 rating for aviation safety by Federal Aviation Administration to Azerbaijan that will permit Azerbaijani air carriers to initiate direct flight to the U.S., which, in its turn, will enhance trade relations between the two countries.

The need of the U.S. administration to speak out more to show support of the United States to Azerbaijan in its path to development was also underlined.

The event was attended by the members of Washington's business and policy-making communities.

Congressman Ted Poe represents the 2nd Congressional District of Texas in the U.S. Congress.

Poe is a leading advocate in Washington for limited government, free markets, low taxes and individual liberty. Prior to serving in Congress, Ted Poe served as a criminal court judge in Houston for 22 years. He currently serves on the House Judiciary Committee, and Foreign Affairs Committee as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade.

USACC holds Congressional Talks Series inviting legislators to speak to the members of business community and provide insights into U.S.-Azerbaijan relations.