By Mirsaid Ibrahimzade
Relations between Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia have always been at a high level, and relations between the countries' business circles are also developing successfully. Business forums in Baku and Riyadh as well as export missions organized between the two countries are evidence of expansion of economic cooperation.
Representatives of the public and private sectors of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA), who are visiting Baku to attend the Falcons Summit, visited the Agency for the Development of SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), the Agency stated.
At the meeting, Chairman of the Board of the Agency Orkhan Mammadov and SAGIA’s International Cooperation & Treaties Senior Specialist Bader Mohammad Almufgai discussed the expansion of ties in the sphere of investments between Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia.
The areas of cooperation envisaged by the program for framework cooperation to expand bilateral investment ties were also discussed, along with the measures to be taken in this area.
The document was signed between the Agency for the Development of SMEs and SAGIA during the 5th meeting of the Azerbaijan-Saudi Arabia Intergovernmental Commission in Baku held on March 4, 2019.
Meetings organized by the Agency are also scheduled between the Saudi delegation and a number of Azerbaijani structures.
The diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in 1992. Over the past years, the bilateral economic relations have strengthened and expanded with the increased interest in investment.
Azerbaijan’s trade turnover with Saudi Arabia amounted to 30.9 million manats ($18.12 million) in 2018, according to the State Customs Committee of Azerbaijan. About 24.3 million manats ($14.25 million) accounted for the import of Saudi products in Azerbaijan.
Saudi Arabia is especially interested in investing in energy sector of Azerbaijan along with agriculture, tourism and transport.
Agency for the Development of SMEs under the Ministry of Economy constantly works for enhancing bilateral investment relations. Its main task is to ensure the succession of reforms, as well as the improvement of the business regulation system and the application of effective coordination, enhancing the role and competitiveness of small and medium-sized businesses in the country's economy, and the compliance of the management system in this area with modern requirements.
As a single structure with special powers, the Agency organizes, coordinates, evaluates and regulates the services provided by government agencies and organizations in this area through SME houses.
Mirsaid Ibrahimzade is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @MirsaidIbrahim1
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