The post-war period opened up great opportunities for Korean companies to participate in the implementation of projects in Azerbaijan, including in the liberated territories, Azerbaijani Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Korea Ramzi Teymurov said in an interview with Trend.
He noted that a priority task of the embassy is to attract foreign direct investment to Azerbaijan.
"In Korea, we are already working on this, and are actively negotiating. Within this, great opportunities have opened up for us to attract Korean investments and companies to participate in the restoration of Azerbaijan's territories (liberated from Armenian occupation), which also opens up new prospects for cooperation," the ambassador said.
According to the ambassador, some agreements have already been reached between Azerbaijan and Korea on the participation of Korean companies in the restoration of the liberated Azerbaijani lands.
"The post-war period opened up great opportunities for Korean companies to participate in the implementation of projects in Azerbaijan, including in the liberated territories. Of course, these companies show great interest and are ready to contribute to the restoration work. I would like to note that Korean companies are leaders in the field of construction, infrastructure creation, and facility design," he added.
"Here it is necessary to take into account the fact that negotiations in this direction are being conducted in a bilateral format, both by the Azerbaijani Embassy in Korea and the Korean Embassy in Azerbaijan, as well as through the interaction of Korean government organizations with government structures of Azerbaijan. According to the information I have, some results have already been achieved," Teymurov said.
He noted that high technologies of Korean manufacturers are widely spread in the domestic market of Azerbaijan.
"Korean innovations are represented in the management of the city of Baku, the systems of higher education and intellectual property management, in a number of other areas where high technologies are applied. The Korean side closely cooperates with the State Statistical Committee of Azerbaijan. On Aug. 10, the Korean Farmconnect company and the Research Institute of Vegetable Growing under the Ministry of Agriculture of Azerbaijan signed an agreement on cooperation in the implementation of Smart Farming technology," the diplomat said.
"I am confident that further cooperation between Azerbaijan and Korea will allow our country to increase its competitiveness in the IT market and management efficiency through modern solutions, as well as increase the country's investment potential. Korea has extensive experience in this area, and further efforts for bilateral cooperation will contribute to the active integration of Korean innovative solutions in Azerbaijan," Teymurov said.
According to Teymurov, the current priority task of the ambassadors of Azerbaijan and Korea is the rapprochement of the two countries in economic and social spheres.
"Within the framework of the visit of Korean President Moon Jae-in to Azerbaijan in 2006 and the return visit of the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev in 2007, a number of agreements and documents were signed providing for the development of economic and other relations. In total, more than 60 agreements have been signed between our countries. In addition, since 2006, Korean enterprises have launched joint projects in Azerbaijan, as our country has shown interest in using the Korean experience and developing technological processes based on Korean technologies," Teymurov said.
The ambassador stressed that Azerbaijani producers of goods and services intend to enter the Korean market.
"Expansion of the range of Azerbaijani products in the Korean market opens up additional opportunities for Azerbaijan to advance in the Asian markets. In this regard, economic relations of our countries and trade turnover have the potential for further growth. We are developing relations in the fields of education, science, agriculture, banking services, IT and in a number of other areas," he said.
The ambassador also said that the Korean companies have implemented and funded projects worth about $2 billion in Azerbaijan.
"In 2020, the trade turnover between the two countries approached $179 million. The figures, of course, do not satisfy us, since the trade turnover figures between the two countries should be even bigger. In 2020, despite the coronavirus pandemic, trade between Azerbaijan and Korea increased by 10 percent compared to 2019," Teymurov said.
"Currently, we are working to increase the import of Azerbaijani products to Korea and we hope that in the next few years the indicators of Azerbaijani exports will increase several times," Teymurov said.
According to the ambassador, the process of promoting Azerbaijan's non-oil products in the Korean market has started.
"The Korean market is about 50 million people. Getting into the Korean market is not an easy task, as it has its own standards and product requirements. It will take several years to bring Azerbaijan's agricultural products to this market, in connection with which work has already begun in cooperation with the Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO)," the official said.
"In addition, we are actively promoting Azerbaijan's food products at various trade exhibitions. In 2019, a visit of a delegation of the Korean Exporters Association to Azerbaijan was organized, within which we reached a number of agreements on the export and import of Azerbaijani goods," the ambassador said.
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