By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia have discussed the organization of mutual business missions during the 4th meeting of the working group on cooperation between Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia in Riyadh, the Agency for the Development of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) has reported.
The parties also discussed the economic cooperation between the two countries, holding joint events with the participation of representatives of Azerbaijani and Saudi Arabian SMEs, the possibility of participation of the relevant Saudi structures in the activities of the SME Development Fund, which is part of the SMEs structure.
At the end of the meeting of the working group, the sides signed final protocol. Director of SMEs Orkhan Mammadov and the Deputy Department of the Main Investment Authority (SAGİA) of Saudi Arabia, Ibrahim al-Suawi signed the document.
The working group operates within the framework of the intergovernmental commission on economic, trade, investment, technical, cultural, sports cooperation between the two countries.
During the visit, Mammadov also held a number of meetings at which issues of creating joint ventures, a joint Business Council were discussed.
The parties also reached an agreement on the “road map” development for joint activities in the framework of cooperation in the field of SMEs.
The share of SMEs in employment in Azerbaijan was 76 percent last year, and in recent years, comprehensive work has been carried out for the development of SMEs. In particular, inspections of business entities have been suspended and the process of obtaining licenses has been simplified. The share of SMEs in Azerbaijan’s foreign trade is planned to increase to 40 percent after 2025.
SME Development Agency continues to establish the Friend of SMEs offices across Azerbaijan as a mechanism that helps to identify and implement initiatives of SMEs, realize their potential, provide them with support at all stages of their development and protect the rights of entrepreneurs.
The activities of the Friends of SMEs are focused on a regions' development potential through the creation of new SMEs and the development of the existing ones. Another key aspect of Friends of SMEs' activity is the provision of SMEs with multiple supports for their sustainable development needs.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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important directions of the activities of Friends of SMEs.