The visit of President of the European Council Charles Michel to Azerbaijan showed that Baku and the EU are on the verge of a new stage in the development of relations, Azerbaijani political analyst Elchin Mirzabayli told Trend on July 20.
“The allocation of funds by the European Union to Armenia in the amount of 2.6 billion euros and statements that this amount can be increased by three more billion euros, caused justified discontent in Azerbaijan before Michel's visit,” Mirzabayli added.
"Michel’s statements at the joint press-conference with acting Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan and their interpretation in the media from the point of view of the interested parties influenced the expectations from the visit of the president of the European Council to Azerbaijan,” the analyst said.
“However, the assumptions made during the visit of the president of the European Council to Armenia, as well as the expectations of Yerevan did not come true,” Mirzabayli added. “Michel's visit to Azerbaijan showed that Baku and the EU are on the verge of a new stage in the development of relations.”
“Of course, one of the highlights of the visit, are the events that demonstrate that the economic relations between Azerbaijan and the European Union will reach a new level,” political analyst said.
"The fact that Michel saw the level of development and prospects of Azerbaijan, his visit to Azercosmos OJSC, participation in the presentation of the Alat free economic zone inspire hope that the prospects for diversifying the economic relations between Azerbaijan and the EU are high and can be expanded beyond traditional cooperation in the field of energy,” Mirzabayli said.
“The balanced behavior of the president of the European Council during his visit to the region, his respect for the values of the Azerbaijani people during his visit to the Juma mosque in Shamakhi district can be viewed as a positive factor in terms of the development of bilateral relations,” political analyst said.
“The fact that in his speech, Michel did not use the words "Nagorno-Karabakh", "status" and others that do not reflect reality and contradict the sovereign rights of Azerbaijan shows that the European Union understands the new realities in the region after the 44-day Karabakh war and takes them into account in its policy,” Mirzabayli said.
“One of the most important and perhaps, the most important opinion expressed by the president of the European Council during his visit to Azerbaijan are the words about the intention and position of Brussels to bring the relations between the EU and Azerbaijan to the level of strategic partnership,” the analyst said. “As is known, Azerbaijan is a strategic partner of nine EU member-states.”
“Michel's statements also prove that Azerbaijan's strategic partnership with the EU countries will expand and cover the entire European Union,” Mirzabayli said. “All this will take place in an equal and bilateral manner rather than within joining any "associative agreements". The reasons are associated not only with the great economic potential of our country.”
“I think that the visit of the president of the European Council to Azerbaijan opens up new opportunities for expanding mutually beneficial cooperation, encouraging the European companies to participate in the projects based on modern technologies, such as smart villages in the liberated territories of Azerbaijan,” Mirzabayli said. “The EU can speed up this process."
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