By Ayya Lmahamad
Azerbaijan and Italy discussed bilateral cooperation in the oil and gas field during the meeting between Energy Minister Parviz Shahbazov and the delegation led by Vice-President of the Italian Chamber of Deputies Ettore Rosato, the ministry reported on December 8.
During the meeting, it was noted that Italy had entrusted its energy security to Azerbaijan as an indicator of high friendly relations between the two countries. In addition, it was noted that Italy is interested in expanding cooperation with Azerbaijan not only in the oil and gas sphere, but also in many sectors of the economy.
The minister highly appreciated the Italian delegation’s visit to Azerbaijan’s Armenian-destroyed cities to witness the scenes of destruction there.
It was noted that signing of “Joint Declaration on Strengthening Multidimensional Strategic Partnership” and many other legal documents during the Azerbaijani President’s visit to Italy ensured a higher level of cooperation between two countries.
Furthermore, it was noted that the cooperation in energy sector has played an important role in the development of relations between two countries.
The Southern Gas Corridor and its important component, the Trans Adriatic Gas Pipeline, were highlighted in this cooperation, and it was noted that Azerbaijani gas transportation to Europe would start by the end of this year.
It was noted that high-level cooperation between Azerbaijan and Italy also covers other economic areas, underlining that Italian companies have so far implemented contracts worth $10 billion in the oil and non-oil sectors.
The head of the Italian delegation noted that the visit to Azerbaijan, which was organized immediately after the end of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, testifies to the high level of friendly relations between two countries. In addition, touching upon the visit to the liberated territories, he expressed deep condolences on behalf of the delegation to the families of the martyrs, their relatives and the people of Azerbaijan.
During the meeting the parties also touched upon the preparation for the next meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation between the Azerbaijan and Italy, which was established for stable and long-term development of trade and economic relations between the two countries.
It should be noted that Italy remained Azerbaijan’s main trading partner between January and October 2020 with a trade turnover of $4.2 billion out of the country's total turnover of $17.8 billion. Export from Azerbaijan to Italy amounted to $3.8 billion, while import from Italy amounted to $341 million.
Italy was Azerbaijan’s top trade partner in 2019 as well with the mutual trade amounting to $7 billion and Azerbaijan was the largest supplier of crude oil to Italy in this period. Some 113 Italian companies, operating in various fields, are registered in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan is one of Italy’s three main energy resources suppliers. The implementation of the Trans-Adriatic Gas Pipeline project is expected to further boost cooperation between the two countries.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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