By Nigar Orujova
The UK is ready to assist Azerbaijani capital markets' integration into global capital markets, Lord Mayor of the City of London Corporation, Alan Yarrow said during a press conference in Baku on June 2.
Azerbaijan’s economy remains dependent on the oil and gas sector and therefore the country needs to develop its capital markets, Yarrow believes.
In general, the capital markets allow entrepreneurs to diversify their fund raising sources - aside from bank loans, it has been possible for companies to attract funds from global organizations as well, he added.
"Countries with developed capital markets have quickly recovered after the global financial crisis, while the recovery process has been more difficult for those countries more dependent on bank loans," said Yarrow.
The main assistance that the UK can render to Azerbaijan for its future economic development is the exchange of knowledge, the Lord Mayor noted.
He also touched upon the issue of decreasing oil prices. “When oil prices remain at a high level for a long time, countries do not pay special attention to the diversification of their economy,” he said.
Undoubtedly, economic diversification will turn Azerbaijan into a more attractive country [for investors], he added.
Azerbaijan and the UK are in close cooperation, Yarrow said. Around 5,000 UK citizens work in Azerbaijan. “UK will support Azerbaijan’s economic development in the future as well.”
Yarrow said he has held a number of high-level meetings in Azerbaijan and discussed the possibilities of strengthening bilateral cooperation.
He added that the Olympic Games in London were held with great success and expressed confidence that the European Games in Baku will also be successful.
Baku 2015 is the first-ever European Games, an exciting and innovative multi-sport event for the continent that will take place on June 12-28.
Earlier, an Azerbaijani-British working meeting was held in Baku as part of Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alan Yarrow's visit to Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan and the United Kingdom cooperate in various fields, including energy, trade and investment. Currently there are 543 companies with British capital in Azerbaijan, as well, the UK has invested $20 billion in Azerbaijan's economy.
Nigar Orujova is AzerNews’s staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @o_nigar
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