By Ayya Lmahamad
Following Turkish companies, Italy has signed an agreement on projects to be implemented in Azerbaijan's liberated territories.
A cooperation agreement on construction of energy infrastructure in Azerbaijan’s liberated territories was signed between the General Director of Azerenergy Baba Rzayev and CEO of Italian Ansaldo Energia Marion Giuseppe and Italian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Augusto Massari.
According to the agreement, Ansaldo Energia will supply equipment for four 110 kV substations to be built in the Aghdam, Kalbajar and Gubadli regions.
It should be noted that the Armenian occupants destroyed all the infrastructure, including power plants, substations and transmission lines in the Aghdam, Fuzuli, Jabrayil, Gubadli, Zangilan regions. There are no signs of an energy system in these areas. In addition, in Lachin, Kalbajar, Shusha and other liberated territories, Armenian forces destroyed all the energy infrastructure and moved or burned the equipment.
Cooperation between Azerbaijan and Italy in the restoration of liberated territories was discussed during the meeting between the Energy Minister and co-chair of the Joint Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation between the two countries Parviz Shahbazov and Secretary of State for the Foreign Ministry and International Cooperation of Italy, co-chair of the Intergovernmental Commission Manlio Di Stefano.
During the meeting, issues on the agenda of bilateral cooperation between Azerbaijan and Italy, and cooperation with Italian companies in the restoration of liberated territories were discussed.
It was noted that cooperation with companies of friendly nations was particularly encouraged in the restoration of liberated territories. Thus, in this regard, Italian companies have discussed the restoration of energy infrastructure, urban development, mine clearance, restoration of historical monuments, implementation of projects in tourism and agricultural areas.
The Italian co-chair expressed his satisfaction with his recent visit to Baku, noting that effective negotiations were held between the two countries on the development of cooperation in political, economic and energy fields.
It should be noted that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev earlier said while receiving Italian Foreign and International Cooperation Minister of State Manlio Di Stefano that Baku intends to sign relevant contracts with Italian companies over the restoration of its lands. He noted that the first contracts were signed with Turkish companies, which is natural, as Turkey is the brotherly country to Azerbaijan, underlining the hope to sign next contracts with Italian companies, as Italy has very close ties with Azerbaijan. In addition, he emphasized the great support and position of Italy during the Second Karabakh War, which demonstrated the strong and friendly relations between the two countries.
Notably, Italy was Azerbaijan’s main trading partner between January and October 2020 with a trade turnover of $4.2 billion out of the country's total turnover of $17.8 billion. Export from Azerbaijan to Italy amounted to $3.8 billion, while import from Italy amounted to $341 million.
Italy was Azerbaijan’s top trade partner in 2019 as well with the mutual trade amounting to $7 billion and Azerbaijan was the largest supplier of crude oil to Italy in this period. Some 113 Italian companies, operating in various fields, are registered in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan is one of Italy’s three main energy resources suppliers. The implementation of the Trans-Adriatic Gas Pipeline project is expected to further boost cooperation between the two countries.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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