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Wednesday April 17 2024

Azerbaijan steps up strategic initiatives in Green Energy [ANALYSIS]

3 April 2024 08:30 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijan steps up strategic initiatives in Green Energy [ANALYSIS]
Elnur Enveroglu
Elnur Enveroglu
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It is no coincidence that Azerbaijan has become an energy giant of the 20th century among the countries in the South Caucasus. Looking at the cooperation between Azerbaijan and European countries in the field of oil and gas from the end of the 20th century until now, it was quite transparent and possible to see the future prospects, which are coming true now.

In our age of technology, the value of time has started to be considered from a number of aspects. Rapid response to global challenges and changes and transition to a diversified economy by exploring new energy resources in a short period of time.

Although oil and gas are considered the main backbone of Azerbaijan's economy, Azerbaijan, which can react flexibly to the demands of the time, was able to take a number of important steps in the mentioned direction. The addition of green energy to the country's economy as an alternative can be considered one of the latest achievements.

Today, the transition to "green energy" is one of the main directions of the energy policy of the state of Azerbaijan. One of the main goals of reforms in the energy sector is to gradually increase the share of energy obtained from "green energy" sources in the country's energy balance. Thus, Azerbaijan actively cooperates with international organizations, various countries and investors in this field.

The 500MW renewable energy joint project of giant energy companies such as ACWA Power of Saudi Arabia and Masdar of Abu Dhabi with Azerbaijan's SOCAR was one of the most successful steps of the last year.
ACWA Power entered the Azerbaijan market in 2019, with the intention of supporting the Central Asian nation in meeting its ambitious renewables integration, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction, and decarbonisation targets.

ACWA Power is currently developing a 240MW wind power plant in Azerbaijan, at an investment value of US$286 million. Meanwhile, four implementation agreements for mega giga projects including a 1GW onshore, a 1.5GW offshore wind farm and a battery energy storage project were signed earlier this year with the Azeri Ministry of Energy, while a cooperation agreement with State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) will enable collaboration and exploration in the fields of renewable energy and green hydrogen.

Moreover, Masdar has been active in Azerbaijan since 2020 and developed the 230MW Garadagh solar plant, which become operational in October this year. The UAE’s clean energy pioneer has also signed agreements to develop onshore wind and solar projects and integrated offshore wind and green hydrogen projects with a total combined capacity of 4GW in the country. Masdar and Azerbaijan have agreed on an option to expand the total capacity for renewable projects to 10GW across multiple technologies.

On the other hand, Azerbaijan's cooperation with Europe in the field of energy can be emphasized.

Two days ago, President Ilham Aliyev's meeting with Romania's Energy Minister Sebastian-Ioan Burduja in Baku was dedicated to the discussion on energy and the expansion of cooperation in many fields.

The President of Azerbaijan underlined that bilateral relations are in the stage of active development and stressed the importance of reciprocal visits between heads of state and at other levels to enhance bilateral ties.

Touching upon the importance of the 8th meeting of the Joint Commission on economic-trade relations and scientific-technical cooperation between the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Government of Romania in Baku in terms of defining the prospects for bilateral bonds, President Ilham Aliyev hailed the inclusion of energy and other pertinent issues in the meeting's agenda.

During the meeting, President Ilham Aliyev highlighted the major projects underway in Azerbaijan’s energy sector, particularly in green energy, and emphasized the significance of the 10th Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council Ministerial Meeting and the 2nd Green Energy Advisory Council Ministerial Meeting held in Baku last month.

Further to the discussions between the President of Azerbaijan and the Romanian Energy Minister, both sides underscored significant advancements in the energy sector and shared opinions on natural gas exports from Azerbaijan and the export of green energy to Romania via the Black Sea. They acknowledged ongoing discussions surrounding LNG, green energy and gas supply projects, with Azerbaijan aiming for a structured entry into the Romanian energy market.

Economic and trade relations between the two countries were highlighted at the meeting, with an emphasis placed on a 30 percent year-on-year increase in trade turnover, amounting to 670 million US dollars. Cooperation concerning investments was also noted. They touched upon SOCAR's active presence in Romania and its substantial role in the country's fuel market.

Thus, the transition to green energy in Azerbaijan has become the main segment of both domestic and foreign policy of Azerbaijan.

In addition to all this, relevant normative legal acts are adopted in the country and institutional measures are implemented for the development of the "Green energy" industry.

In general, the transition to green energy plays an important role in solving global environmental problems for Azerbaijan. This is of great importance in ensuring the sustainability of the ecosystem and the balance between human needs and nature's capabilities.

It is no coincidence that Azerbaijan, which has taken important steps in this field, is also preparing to host COP29. Holding such a global event in Azerbaijan is also a clear example of the country's joint support for steps taken to prevent climate change and global warming.

Because green energy production occupies a special place in ensuring energy security for Azerbaijan. Also, the strengthening of production encourages the development of new technologies and innovations.

The Republic of Azerbaijan has a favorable green energy potential from a geographical point of view, and a purposeful state policy is carried out in order to use it efficiently. Undoubtedly, Azerbaijan is ready to make even more efforts to successfully fulfill its commitment by 2040.

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Elnur Enveroglu is AzerNews’ Deputy Editor-in-Chief; follow him on @ElnurMammadli1

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