By Rasana Gasimova
Azerbaijan and Ukraine has signed an agreement on cooperation in the area of oil and gas.
The document was signed following the Azerbaijan-Ukraine Working Group on cooperation in the energy sector held in Kyiv on January 30.
At the meeting, Azerbaijan was represented by Energy Minister Parviz Shahbazov, SOCAR President Rovnag Abdullayev, Deputy Energy Minister Elnur Soltanov, and SOCAR Vice President Elshad Nasirov.
Addressing the meeting, Parviz Shahbazov noted that Azerbaijan exported over 1.9 million tons of oil to Ukraine in 2017-2019.
“Over the past three years, Azerbaijan has delivered over 1.9 million tons of oil to Ukraine. In addition, SOCAR Trading SA supplied oil and oil products from other sources to Ukraine. SOCAR Energy Ukraine's investments in Ukraine’s economy for the entire period of its activity exceeded $300 million,” he stressed.
He also said that so far Ukraine has invested $25.4 million in Azerbaijan’s economy, while Azerbaijan’s investments in Ukraine economy amount to $1.1 billion.
Shahbazov noted that energy-related proposals put forward by Ukraine are being studied. He also noted that consultations are also held on the issue of transportation of Azerbaijani oil products through Ukraine.
“I’m convinced that decisions on the issues put forward at the meeting will be made after the conclusion of the experts. Today, SOCAR is investing sufficient funds in Ukraine. Some 60 filling stations and four oil depots operate under the SOCAR brand in the country. I think that SOCAR will continue to expand its activities in Ukraine,” he went on saying.
Rovnag Abdullayev emphasized that SOCAR is interested in expanding its activities in Ukraine.
“I think that as a result of this visit and meetings, cooperation between the two countries in the field of energy will continue to develop,” he said.
For his part, Ukraine’s Minister of Energy and Environmental Protection Oleksiy Orzhel noted that relations between Azerbaijan and Ukraine are developing in all areas, including energy, adding that Ukraine is interested in the investment of Azerbaijani companies in this area.
He said that Azerbaijan could export oil and gas products to foreign markets, including Belarus, through Ukraine.
Orzhel stressed that Ukraine has now begun to work closely with European countries to transport oil and gas products. He noted that Ukraine can help supply Azerbaijani products to these markets. He further said that Ukraine is interested to participate in the Southern Gas Corridor project.
Azerbaijan is currently the main supplier of oil to Ukraine. Ukraine imported crude oil worth $309.443 million from Azerbaijan in 2019, which is 76.3 of the country’s total crude oil imports.
SOCAR carries out its activity in Ukraine through SOCAR Energy Ukraine since 2009. SOCAR filling station network includes 59 filling stations in 11 regions of the country as well as two oil tankers.
Earlier this month, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and SOCAR President Rovnag Abdullayev discussed investing in infrastructure projects, enterprises, as well as gas transmission capacities of Ukraine during their meeting held as part of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
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