SOCAR Office Opened in Brussels

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 11/14/2012, Location: Europe

On November 13, the ceremony of opening of SOCAR’s representation in the Kingdom of Belgium was held in Brussels. SOCAR President Rovnag Abdullayev and other officials of the company visited the representative’s office, congratulated the staff and wished successes to them. Then the session entitled “EU and Azerbaijan: strategic partnership - Southern Gas Corridor and other directions” took place in Conrad Hotel, Brussels. Vice President of the European Commission Siim Kallas, European Commissioners, members of the European, Belgian and Azerbaijani parliaments, Belgian government officials, diplomats, experts and analysts, representatives of the oil and gas companies, banking sector, mass media and public organizations attended the event.

Moderator of the session - Vladimir Socor, Senior Fellow of the Washington-based Jamestown Foundation and well-known expert on international strategic relations, noted that Azerbaijan is a strategic partner of the West in Eastern Europe. He characterized the Western-oriented development as a national matter for our republic and highly appreciated the country’s active participation in the international humanitarian operations. Calling Azerbaijan a symbol of religious and ethnic tolerance in the post-Soviet area and entire region and successfully modernized Muslim country, Mr. Socor also noted the country’s role as a bridge between the nations, cultures and civilizations. Speaking about the importance of the Southern Gas Corridor for the energy security of the EU countries, he welcomed Azerbaijan’s efforts towards the realization of the project and called the Trans-Anatolian Gas Pipeline (TANAP) a step forward in this sphere.

SOCAR President Rovnag Abdullayev welcomed the participants of the session and spoke about the achievements in oil and gas industry within the framework of the new oil strategy founded by National Leader of our people Heydar Aliyev and successfully developed under the leadership of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev. He said the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan entered the world energy market with confidence and looks forward to broaden geography of its activity in the European countries. Focusing attention on the important role of Azerbaijan in Europe’s energy supply as an oil exporter, SOCAR president said our republic gained influence as a gas exporter too. Mr. Abdullayev spoke about the prospects of the Southern Gas Corridor project and preliminary issues before the construction of TANAP, which will be the core of this corridor. He expressed confidence that the SOCAR’s newly-opened representation in Brussels would contribute to the development of Azerbaijan-EU energy cooperation.

Deputy Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Araz Azimov and Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to Belgium and EU Fuad Isgandarov said Azerbaijan-EU partnership went beyond the energy cooperation and had cultural and political importance. Vice speaker of the Azerbaijani parliament Valeh Alasgarov said Azerbaijan created reliable and diversified export-transport pipelines system and became the first country delivering Caspian energy resources to Europe. He said support of TANAP project was important not only for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, but also for the European Union.

SOCAR Vice President Tofig Gahramanov spoke about the company’s strategic development projects. Chairman of the supervisory board of “Azerkimya” Production Association, MP Mukhtar Babayev informed the participants of the session about the development of oil-chemical industry in our country. EU Commissioner for Energy Günther Oettinger said Azerbaijan overcame long way of development in the past 20 years and gained important place in the world economy. He appreciated SOCAR’s role in this progress and said opening of the company’s representation in the center of Europe proved this. Today SOCAR brings Azerbaijan closer to Europe. The EU commissioner said Southern Gas Corridor would strengthen relations between Azerbaijan and EU. He appreciated TANAP project as an important infrastructure element of this system. Günther Oettinger congratulated SOCAR officials on launching company’s representation in Brussels and said: “Welcome to Brussels and thank you for coming”. Following the session and dinner, Azerbaijani musicians gave a concert.

A working dinner was organized at the European Parliament in honor of the Azerbaijani delegation.


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