By Sara Israfilbayova
A unified database of large state-owned companies has been created in Azerbaijan, taking into account the recommendations of the World Bank (WB).
Chairman of the State Property Committee Kerem Hasanov made the remarks at the conference entitled “Promoting Transparency and Efficiency of State-Owned Enterprises in Azerbaijan” on June 12.
He noted that, this database contains information on personnel records, financial and accounting indicators, including information on real estate.
“At the same time, a special web platform was created, which allows large state-owned enterprises to input relevant information into this database. This platform is available on the portal of electronic services of the State Committee. Currently, the database contains information on 20 large state-owned enterprises. In the future, their number may increase,” Hasanov said.
He went on to say that in Azerbaijan, it is necessary to restructure state-owned enterprises and privatize their non-core assets.
“The number of state-owned enterprises should be reduced. To do this, it is necessary to reorganize these state-owned enterprises, and then put up the non-core enterprises for privatization. Therefore, one of our main tasks is to identify non-core assets in state-owned enterprises,” Hasanov said.
He went on to say that this process will reduce the burden on state-owned enterprises, reduce the expenditures of the state budget, which, in turn, will ensure a healthier operation of state-owned enterprises.
WB urges to further increase transparency in state enterprises’ activity
In turn, Country Manager for the World Bank Azerbaijan Office Naveed Hassan Naqvi noted that the state enterprises play a special role in Azerbaijan’s economy.
“The activity of state enterprises is important for the economic sustainability of any country, including Azerbaijan,” he said.
“But at the same time, it is important for corporate governance to be developed at the state enterprises,” Naqvi stressed, adding that transparency and effectiveness of the state enterprises’ activity should be further strengthened.
The WB manager noted that carrying out reforms to increase transparency will strengthen the economy of Azerbaijan and help the country to move from the category of countries with an average return to the number of high-income countries.
“In Azerbaijan, these reforms have been successfully carried out, 16 out of 20 state enterprises have become public legal entities, but it is necessary to continue working. We need to further develop the legal framework and the World Bank is ready to support Azerbaijan’s aspirations,” Naqvi said.
State-owned enterprises consolidating debts
Deputy Economy Minister Sevinj Hasanova, taking her turn, underlined that the work to improve accounting reporting has been completed in 18 of the 20 public enterprises of Azerbaijan.
The deputy minister noted that the state enterprises were instructed to consolidate debts.
“To date, 18 out of 20 large state enterprises of Azerbaijan have completely switched to the international standards of the accounting report, and these state enterprises have been given the task to solve the issues of accounts payable that must be consolidated,” she said.
A conference on “Promoting Transparency and Efficiency of State-Owned Enterprises in Azerbaijan”, organized by the State Property Committee and the World Bank, started in Baku on June 12.
The event was attended by representatives of the State Committee, the World Bank, the Ministries of Economics and Finance, experts and representatives of public organizations.
The purpose of the conference is to increase transparency and effectiveness in the sphere of state property management and to expand the application of existing optimization methods.
Sara Israfilbayova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Sara_999Is
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