Japanese Ambassador

Japan’s Ambassador Praises Efforts to Improve Business Climate

Tsuguo Takahashi
Tsuguo Takahashi

Azerbaijan is creating the right conditions for FDI, according to Tsuguo Takahashi, Japan’s Ambassador to Azerbaijan. He comments, “We welcome steps recently taken by the Azerbaijani government to improve the efficiency of government services and to combat corruption. The government is committed to establishing industrial complexes and technological parks and to improving the business and investment environment in general.”

While Azerbaijan’s oil sector continues to attract investors, the country offers many other opportunities, according to Mr. Takahashi. He notes that Azerbaijan has the potential to become a leading transport hub linking Europe and Asia. He says, “Azerbaijan can supply natural gas to European markets via the South Corridor project, and the planned Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline (TANAP) and Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) will add to the country’s advantages. When these pipelines are completed, Azerbaijan will be an important partner for ensuring Europe’s energy security.”

Focus on non-oil sectors

Azerbaijan is currently focusing on attracting investment to its non-oil sectors in preparation for the day when the country’s oil resources peak. Targeted sectors include construction, ICT and manufacturing. To add to Azerbaijan’s investment appeal, the government is promoting human-resources development, including free university education abroad through SOFAZ, the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan. Mr. Takahashi points out, “The government of Azerbaijan has designated 2014 the ‘year of industry’ and is creating new incentives like Sumgayit Chemical Industry Park, currently under construction, which will offer seven-year tax exemptions for companies operating there.”

Mr. Takahashi notes that the Azerbaijani government welcomes partnerships with foreign enterprises. The ambassador concludes, “There are both positive and negative aspects in Azerbaijan’s business environment for investors, but the country generally offers economic and political stability, an improving business climate, a favourable environment for foreign investment, and a very strategic location.”

You might be interested in