By Leman Mammadova
Azerbaijan's exports amounted to $4.5 billion in the first quarter of this year, showing a 34 percent increase ($1.1 billion) compared to the same period last year.
In January-March 2019, exports in the non-oil sector increased by $59 million or 16.5 percent, amounting to $415 million, reads the export review by the Center for Analysis of Economic Reforms and Communication.
Over the three months, Azerbaijan exported non-oil goods worth $115 million to Russia, $99 million to Turkey, $50 million to Georgia, $33.7 million to Switzerland and $12.7 million to Italy. Non-oil exports to Russia increased by 17 percent, to Turkey - by 2 percent, to Georgia - by 58 percent and to Italy - by 74 percent compared with the same period of 2018.
In the list of non-oil products exported in January-March, electricity ($38.4 million) is first. Peeled nut comes second ($38.4 million), while raw cotton ($37.4 million) is on the third place.
During the reporting period, export of fruits and vegetables totaled to $103.5 million, plastic and its products - $48.4 million, cotton fiber - $37.7 million, aluminum and its products - $22.3 million, chemical products - $17.6 million, ferrous metals and products - $11.6 million, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages - $7.5 million, while the export of cotton yarn made up $6.4 million.
In March, the non-oil exports reached $133.7 million. The most non-oil products were exported to Turkey ($35.7 million), Russia ($33.3 million) and Georgia ($13.2 million).
The export review also presented main exporter companies in the non-oil sector. MKT Production Commercial, SOCAR Polymer, Azerbaijan International Mining Company, P-Agro, TST Export, Sun Food, Azhazelnut, Ram International Transport and Trade, Baku Steel Company and Azerstar are the top ten private exporters of January-March 2019.
The list of public companies involved in the non-oil export operations is headed by SOCAR’s Marketing and Economic Operations Department, followed by Azerenergy, Azeraluminium, Azergold, Azerbaijan Airlines, CTS-Agro, Azerpambiq Agro-Industrial Complex, Baku Oil Mechanical Plant, Azeripek and Azerbaijan Railways.
In general, the volume of trade operations of Azerbaijan amounted to $7.6 billion in the first three months of the year, according to the State Customs Committee.
Export and import operations develop and expand national economies as well as constitute the basis of successful business. A country’s economy develops by exporting wealthy assets and importing goods that it lacks.
At present, oil and gas account for the main share in Azerbaijan's export, although export of non-oil products shows an upward trend.
Opening of Azerbaijani trade houses abroad and organization of export missions to foreign countries to promote the Made in Azerbaijan brand in foreign markets have further developed the share of non-oil products in the structure of country’s exports.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
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