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China bans new government buildings in corruption curb
24.07.2013 14:18
China has banned the construction of government buildings for five years, according to state media, BBC reported.

The move comes as part of a campaign by President Xi Jinping to show that the ruling Communist Party (CPC) is cracking down on corruption and waste.

Glitzy new government buildings, sometimes in impoverished areas, have been a source of public outrage.

The directive forbids luxury makeovers and expansions done under the guise of repair work, Xinhua newspaper said.


The notice says some departments and local authorities have built huge government office compounds against regulations, tainting the image of the CPC.

Among the buildings that have attracted widespread disapproval in recent years is the western-style government office building in the city of Fuyang in Anhui province, in eastern China.

It reportedly cost 30 million yuan ($4.89m, pound;3.19m) to build and is referred to as the 'White House' by residents.

A state-owned drug company also caused outrage after photographs emerged apparently showing a building decorated to mimic France's Versailles palace, complete with gold-tinted walls and chandeliers.

Some government agencies have reportedly built luxury offices in seaside resorts where officials can stay for free or at deeply discounted prices.

The ban - described as an "across-the-board halt" - includes training centres, hotels or government motels, Xinhua said.

It also says government organisations should not receive sponsorship or donations towards construction projects, or collaborate with private companies.

"Banning the building of new government buildings is important for building a clean government and also a requirement for boosting CPC-people ties and maintaining the image of the CPC and the government," Xinhua quoted the directive as saying.

Tackling corruption has been President Xi Jinping's most high-profile policy since he became China's leader earlier this year.

He has warned that "corruption and bribe-taking by some party members and cadres" pose "severe challenges" to the Communist Party's rule.

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    "Our assessment of Kapital Bank's capital and earnings is "adequate," as defined by our criteria. The bank's capital buffer materially strengthened in 2014 when the shareholders injected AZN70 million into the bank, and later, further increased the authorized share capital by an additional AZN36 million of retained earnings. Thus, as of Dec. 31, 2014, our risk-adjusted capital ratio, before adjustments for diversification, stood at a comfortable 10.4%. However, we expect that this metric will gradually decline over the next 12-18 months to about 9.0%-9.5%, which is neutral for our ratings on banks in countries with a 'bb-' anchor", said in statement of Samp;P.

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    "We understand that this was due to the bank's attempts to gain momentum in the booming consumer lending segment in Azerbaijan and leverage its wide franchise and brand recognition. We believe credit costs may increase in the near future, in line with market trends", analysts said.

    Samp;P assess Kapital Bank's funding as "average," as defined by our criteria. Although its loan-to-deposit ratio of 145% looks relatively aggressive, it is in line with the system average ratio of 150%.

    Kapital Bank's liquidity is currently "adequate" as defined by our criteria. "We understand that cash and money market instruments exceed 30% of total assets or AZN580 million as of June 30, 2015, which amply covers the bank's short- and long-term wholesale debt", said in statement.

    The long-term counterparty credit rating is one notch higher than the bank's stand-alone credit profile, which we assess at 'b '. This reflects our current view of Kapital Bank's "high" systemic importance and the Azerbaijan government's "supportive" stance toward the domestic banking sector.

    "The stable outlook balances our concerns that deteriorated operating conditions in Azerbaijan may intensify pressure on the bank's financial fundamentals, especially its asset quality and earnings capacity, against an adequate capital buffer with good loss-absorption capacity in the challenging environment", analysts said.

    Agency could revise the outlook to positive if the bank demonstrates a positive track record of sustainable financial performance with noticeable improvements in asset quality metrics. Such a scenario could materialize if operating conditions in Azerbaijan substantially ease, while at the same time our other analytical factors remain unchanged, said in statement.

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  • Tehran committed to regain share in world market
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    By Sara Rajabova - AzerNews

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    Capital Economics claimed OPECв's Gulf members have so far been adamant that they would not cut production to support prices, despite calls from other members, especially Iran.

    ''There is no reason for them to change this stance once Iran resumes higher oil exports. Indeed, the return of Iranian exports may actually reinforce OPECв's 'no output cutsв' stance, putting even more pressure on U.S. shale producers,'' the report said.

    Noting that OPEC should reconsider current oil production, Zanganeh said OPEC members have been asked to hold an extraordinary session should all 13 members agree to it on consensus.

    He said certain OPEC members are trying to harm other members through suppressed prices as a result of oversupply.

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    Parviz Mina, who served on the OPEC Long-Term Strategy Committee, toldВ TrendВ that when Iran starts increasing output, OPEC countries will take new actions to cut production in order to protect prices from falling further than what they are today.

    Iranian oil production has fallen by over 1m bpd since the imposition of the latest round of sanctions at the start of 2012.

    Iran pumped 3.6 million barrels of oil a day last year, down from 4.4 million in 2011, according to BP Plc data. The Islamic Republic produced 2.85 million barrels a day in July, according to the Bloomberg data.

    The country indented to increase output by 500,000 barrels a day after sanctions are lifted, and another 500,000 barrels after that.

    "Iran does have considerable quantities of crude oil in storage, both on land and at sea, which could be sold as soon as sanctions are lifted. But little is known about how large these stockpiles actually are. Estimates range from 10m to 40m barrels, which would allow Iran to double exports between a week and a month before increased production would need to take over," Capital Economics estimated.

    Iranian officials have also claimed they would increase production to pre-2009 levels of around 4m barrels per day within about three months.

    However, such an increase in output doesnв't seem real, as it would take a considerably longer period of time to renovate Iranв's ageing infrastructure.

    "Three months may prove to be a bit too ambitious, given that many of the countryв's oil fields are aging and will require a significant amount of time and money to return back to the full production. However, Tehran is already in talks with major oil companies about exploiting its remaining reserves," according to the report by Capital Economics.

    In the meantime, Zanganeh said the government hasn't allocated any financial resources to develop its oil and gas industry due to a fall in the price of oil in current year.

    Zanganeh said during the fiscal years 2011 and 2012 Iran invested $40 billion in oil and gas projects in total, while in 2013 and 2014 this figure plunged to $10 billion and $6 billion, respectively.
  • 'Manspreading' added to online dictionary
    27.08.2015 20:48
    The act of "manspreading", or sitting with legs wide apart on public transport, is among 1,000 new words to enter the online Oxford dictionary.

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    The company that brought us ''rank and yank'', that diabolic efficiency-driven human-resources practice of culling the bottom 10% of your performers to make room for new talent, has a better idea for us. General Electric, the bellwether of management practice for decades, isВ joining companies such as Accenture, Adobe and Medtronic in doing away with traditional performance reviewsВ entirely, in favor of more personalised and developmental feedback.

    Why? And what does it mean for managers and organisations everywhere?

    First, some background. Every company has the same challenge '" how to identify who is doing a good job, who is doing a great job and yes, who is messing up. This step is a prerequisite to important leadership decisions around compensation, coaching, and promotions and dismissals. If everyone in an organisation was highly self-motivated and competent, people could probably do this for themselves, but alas, such a utopian state is seldom the case.

    Unfortunately, the solution that has evolved in most organisations may well violate the managerial version of the Hippocratic Oath '" do no harm. Where to begin?

    The problem with reviews

    People donв't like negative feedback. This in and of itself is hardly a reason not to do performance reviews; I donв't like going to the dentist but I do it anyways. But it raises the degrees of difficulty.

    A big problem is that we think weв're way better at evaluating people than we actually are. The range of biases each of us carries around all day without knowing it can be stunning. We like people who look like us. We like people who worked in the same department we used to. We rate people better when we hired them ourselves than we do if we inherited them. Bottom line: If you think youв're ''fair'' youв're probably fooling yourself.

    If you think youв're ''fair'' youв're probably fooling yourself.

    All of us whoв've been on the receiving end of reviews know well that feeling of a lack of trust that gnaws at us. Made all the more annoying because our brains fixate on the bottom line '" whatв's my raise?; whatв's my bonus?

    Add in that performance reviews are usually annual, and hence, backward-looking and unconnected to day-to-day work, and itв's easy to see whatв's wrong with traditional performance evaluation: Reviewers arenв't as good at it as we think and employees arenв't as attuned to the message at they might be.

    Can performance reviews be fixed?

    Fundamentally, there are two things getting mixed up in performance reviews '" feedback to help you get better at what you do, and evaluation to decide compensation and promotion. Annual performance reviews conflate the two, creating unnecessary side effects in the process.

    How can it make sense to provide feedback to someone on your team once a year? Crazy. People benefit when that feedback is closely connected to the work theyв're doing, not delayed by a matter of months or up to a year. Feedback should be regular, I mean even daily when possible, and informal.

    There are three tests we can apply to feedback:В 

    First, feedback must be honest. This is a tough one, because our biases donв't disappear just because we wish them to. Itв's also what makes people crazy. If you want to get the best out of people, they need to know what you think, and they need to see your feedback as fair.

    Second, it should be constructive, focusing on what needs to get done better and not just outpointing mistakes in the past.

    And third, feedback should promote independence and initiative. If you only tell someone what they should have done differently, or worse, you impose your views on their work, they get the message to do it your way. But no one ever made it big by slavishly following others. Some adjustments may be necessary, even essential, but whoв's to say that your way is the only right way?

    A new approach

    For its part, GE is taking a constructive approach, rolling out a new performance- feedback system designed to identify what employees should ''continue'' to do, and what they should ''consider'' doing differently. The choice of language is purposeful, providing feedback in a way that makes it easier for employees to accept by giving them a degree of control over what they do.В 

    Am I doing right? Am I moving in the right direction?

    Often driven by technology (companies are using apps to make it easier to give and take feedback), this new wave enables people to know, as Accenture chief executivePierre Nanterme put itВ ''on an ongoing basis, 'Am I doing right? Am I moving in the right direction? Do you think Iв'm progressing?в' Nobodyв's going to wait for an annual cycle to get that feedback.''В 

    The upside of these approaches is that if weв're talking regularly with the people who work for us, bonuses or raises become less of a mystery. Youв're much more likely to know where you stand and, hopefully, more likely to buy into what comes out of it. But even if itв's still not perfect, the real work of getting better will have taken place throughout the year, uncontaminated by mistrust and gamesmanship. And then maybe we would stop hating those performance reviews just a little.

    /By BBC/
  • SOCAR commissions well at offshore field
    27.08.2015 19:50
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    Azerbaijan's state oil company SOCAR, after conducting geological explorations, put to operational fund a new well at the lsquo;Gunashli' field in the Caspian Sea's Azerbaijani sector, said the company August 27.

    SOCAR said the well #80 was put into operation after geological and technical works were conducted from the jacket #13 at a range of 3,075-3,052 meters.

    The well's daily output stands at 100,000 cubic meters of gas, according to the company.

    Operational works at the well are conducted by the lsquo;28 May Oil and Gas Production Department'.

    lsquo;Gunashli' field plays an important role in the oil and gas industry of Azerbaijan.

    SOCAR independently develops the field's shallow water part, while its deep-water part is being developed within the lsquo;Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli' block together with foreign partners.

    In 2014, SOCAR produced over 8.32 million metric tons of oil versus 8.31 million metric tons produced in 2013.

    Last year more than 42.4 million metric tons of oil was produced in Azerbaijan compared to 43.5 million metric tons produced in 2013.

    Edited by CN


    Follow the author on Twitter: @MaksimTsurkov

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  • CIS headquarters to host photo exhibition "The Last World War: Remember in the name of peace"
    27.08.2015 19:28
    A photo exhibition entitled "The Last World War: Remember in the name of peace" dedicated to the 70th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany and the end of the Second World War, will take place in CIS headquarters in Minsk on September 3. The exposition which has been co- organized by Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Armenia, features photographs taken in various places of the former Soviet Union during the years of the Second World War. The opening of the exhibition will be attended by ambassadors and permanent representatives of CIS member states and foreign organizations.

    /By AzerTac/
  • Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan intend to enhance ties
    27.08.2015 19:04
    By Aynur Karimova

    Turkmenistan's capital of Ashgabat hosted the Turkmen-Kazakh business forum on August 25, which was attended by representatives of Turkmenistan's ministries, the Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, as well as a delegation from Kazakhstan.

    Forum participants noted that Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan intend to realize opportunities to enhance mutually beneficial trade and economic ties.

    They also voiced prospects for mutually beneficial ties and made concrete proposals to promote the expansion of contacts.

    The production of construction materials, along with the construction, electricity, chemical, pharmaceutical, medical, and food industries were mentioned as priority areas of cooperation between the two countries.

    The establishment of close relations in the field of space technology was among the most discussed topics of the meeting.

    Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan are linked not only by geography, but also by the cultural and historical ties of the two peoples. The two countries established the diplomatic relations in 1992.

    Kazakhstan mainly exports vegetables, tobacco, flour, and chemical products to Turkmenistan, while it imports mineral and chemical products from its neighbor.

    Meanwhile, Turkmenistan exports oil products, cotton and textile goods, natural gas (transit), liquid pumps, and construction materials to Kazakhstan, and imports metal products, natural calcium phosphate, wood and wood products, as well as flour, pastry, confectionery products, and fruit juices.

  • US, Uzbekistan discuss prospects for bilateral dialogue intensification
    27.08.2015 18:48
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Aug. 27

    By Demir Azizov- Trend:

    Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov and Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia at the US Department of State Daniel Rosenblum discussed prospects of intensification of Uzbek-US dialogue in Tashkent Aug.27, the message of the Foreign Ministry of Uzbekistan said August 27.

    The sides exchanged views on the state and prospects of Uzbek-US dialogue intensification in the political, trade-economic, investment, humanitarian and other fields of mutual interest at the meeting.

    During the meeting, the sides discussed some issues of international and regional policy as well.

    US Ambassador to Uzbekistan Pamela Leora Spratlen took part in the meeting.

    Edited by CN

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  • How to diversify investments by trading CFDs on Indices
    27.08.2015 18:30
    By Emmanouil Lemonakis, Head of Central Eastern Europe Region for Saxo Bank

    One of the most important aspects when considering the make-up of an investment portfolio is diversification. By allocating investments amongst a variety of instruments and geographies investors can reduce their exposure to risk, especially during times of market volatility. The key to successful diversification is to choose a range of assets that react differently to the same event and have a historic pattern of returns moving in different directions.

    The rationale for diversification is clear. If one asset class or investment within your portfolio is performing poorly, having a diverse range of investments will allow you to offset the impact of the poor performance from a single asset on your overall portfolio returns.

    Take a position in the market without owning the underlying asset

    Another way of minimising adverse exposures on your portfolio is to achieve exposure to instruments without owning an underlying asset. Increasingly popular as an instrument for diversifying a portfolio are CFDs, specifically CFDs on Indices. CFDs - also known as Contracts for Difference - are a derivative product which allow investors to take a position in the market and trade live market price movements without needing to own the underlying asset. In the case of CFDs on Indices, investors realise a gain by predicting whether the underlying asset - a specific stock market index - will rise or fall in price.

    Investing in the stock market is one of the most popular and well-known financial investments, which makes the transition to trading in CFDs on Indices simple. Indices represent the collective value of the underlying public traded companies on a particular stock market. One of the most well-known indices is the Samp;P500, a group of 500 large companies listed on the NYSE or NASDAQ. When you invest in the Samp;P500 index you are making an investment based on the overall performance of these 500 companies. It's a popular index because it is considered representative of the US stock market and its performance usually reflects wider trends in the US economy.

    Stock indices are generally highly responsive to economic data and news which makes it easier to forecast and trade than following individual companies. The most popular indices are made up of blue chip securities and they usually perform in a way that acts as a benchmark of the market performance of the country in which they are based.

    CFD Indices growing in popularity with Europe investors

    In Central and Eastern Europe, there is growing interest from Saxo Bank clients in CFD indices, with these assets now traded by 23% of our clients. Amongst the most popularly traded indices by Saxo Bank clients in the region are the Germany 30, US SPX500, US 30 Wall Street, US Tech 100 NAS, and UK 100.

    It's no coincidence that these five indices are popular with Saxo traders in Europe, as one of the key advantages of CFDs on Indices is geographical diversification. Domestic stock markets in Central and Eastern Europe have been dogged by low returns in recent times and investors are increasingly looking for new opportunities outside the local market to invest in. By investing in Indices, traders have access to stock markets from all around the world, regardless of whether they are based in Prague, Warsaw, Athens, Istanbul, or Baku.

    Spread risk and reduce market exposure

    Investing in an index of the stock market is considered less risky than investing in individual stocks, which makes indices an ideal diversification tool. By investing in a group of stocks, traders spread their risk across the whole market. The other advantage of CFD indices is that they are straightforward to invest in; traders simply place an order on the index and if they make the correct assumption that the index will grow in value, they will earn the difference in the price. Because traders don't own the underlying asset, trading costs are lower and - in contrast to owning a stock - there are no restrictions on short selling, so it's possible to profit whether the market is moving up or down.

    CFDs are also margin-traded products, which means traders are only required to supply a fraction of the total cost of buying the underlying asset. While CFD trading does offer the potential of greater returns compared to traditional instruments, it can also lead to greater potential losses.

    Most importantly, investors need to take essential measures to educate themselves about the assets they are investing in and ensure they understand all the advantages and disadvantages of trading an instrument. This is always an important aspect to consider when taking out investments, but is even more critical during times of extreme volatility. At Saxo Bank we take investor education seriously - we want to enable our clients to access the investment market over a long term and to take advantage of all opportunities that are available in the global markets.

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  • TAPI partners discuss project economics
    27.08.2015 18:08
    Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, Aug. 27

    By Huseyn Hasanov- Trend:

    Technical and commercial presentation of the technical and economic issues of the TAPI gas pipeline project (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) prepared by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has been discussed at the regular meeting on the project held in Dubai.

    The message of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of Turkmenistan said that the representatives of countries involved in the project, as well as managers of the ADB, which is a transactional advisor to the TAPI project took part in the meeting.

    The message said that the TAPI main gas pipeline is designed to make a significant contribution to sustainable socio-economic development of states of the Asian region and contribute to the strengthening of global energy security as a whole. The gas pipeline will connect South Asia with Central Asian countries rich in energy resources, according to the message.

    The basic document for the promotion of TAPI is the Ashgabat interstate agreement signed between the participating states in 2010 on starting the practical implementation of this project.

    The length of TAPI gas pipeline will be 1,800 kilometers, of which 200 kilometers will run though Turkmenistan, 773 kilometers - Afghanistan, 827 kilometers - Pakistan (to Fazilka settlement on the border with India). It is designed to meet the gas demand of the industry of the countries with the population of over 1.5 billion.

    The annual pumping capacity of the gas pipeline will be 33 billion cubic meters.

    The project cost of TAPI is $10 billion.

    The gas pipeline must stretch from the largest gas field in Turkmenistan - Galkynysh.

    Edited by CN

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  • Iran can extend gas export to Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 18:08
    "This will be beginning of gas export to Europe''

    Iran put a new gas compressor station into operation to extend gas export to the neighbour countries.

    According to Press TV, the new station will increase gas export to Azerbaijan, Nakhchivan, Turkey and Armenia from 24 mcm to 56 mcm.

    This will be beginning of gas export to Europe.
  • Gov't to fight cuber frauds in Internet messengers, social networks
    27.08.2015 18:02
    By Nigar Orujova - AzerNews

    Azerbaijan has started negotiations with international companies on the regulation of instant messengers and social networks in the country.

    ''The Communications and High Technologies Ministry will certify the activity of instant messengers (Viber, WhatsApp, Skype, and others) and social networks,'' said Communications and High Technologies Minister Ali Abbasov on August 27.

    Abbasov said negotiations with these companies have already started. ''Most of them have reacted positively to this action of the regulatory body of the country.''

    ''As it is known, people are actively using social networks and instant messengers in Azerbaijan,'' he went on to say. ''Moreover, a number of them render services over the Internet. As a regulatory body, we believe that the companies engaged in mass collection of information in Azerbaijan must work in accordance with the countryв's law about the personal data, that is, get a certificate. This certificate is issued by our ministry.''

    ''Currently, the ministry is already negotiating with Viber, WhatsApp, Skype, and social networks,'' he said. ''This practice is used not only in Azerbaijan but also in some European countries.''

    Every country certifies and regulates the activity of its instant messengers and social networks in accordance with its laws, Abbasov added.

    ''Certainly, it is a fairly complex and painstaking work, which is often perceived as an alleged obstacle to their activities,'' he said.

    However, Abbasov assured that this is not a case in Azerbaijan. ''I can definitely say that it is not so, and never will be like that. These companies have a fairly extensive database of citizens' personal data, and we as the regulatory body should protect the rights of citizens in a virtual environment.''

    Negotiations conducted with Viber, WhatsApp, Skype, and social networks being conducted constructively, and many of them have already begun to study the legislation of Azerbaijan, the minister added.

    ''I believe that their activities will be certified, and those companies that provide communications services will have to get a license,'' said Abbasov.

    The idea of licensing the activity of instant messengers and social networks in Azerbaijan was first introduced by the Communication and High Tech Minister earlier in August.

    There are no restrictions in Azerbaijan on services rendered by social networks like Skype, Facebook, and WhatsApp, Abbasov said then.

    Azerbaijan is a country with developing information technologies where the mobile phone penetration rate stands at 112 percent. Social networks and messengers are broadly used among all ages.

    For years, Facebook has remained the most visited website in Azerbaijan, however, people are increasingly using other social networks like YouTube, Twitter, Vkontakte, and Odnoklassniki, as well as instant messenger platforms such as WhatsApp, Skype, Viber, Telegram, etc.

    Notwithstanding that this trend harms the interests of the mobile operators, the Communications and High Technologies Ministry earlier assured users that it does not intend to limit the operation of internet messengers in Azerbaijan.

    Thus, the process of regulation is expected to not touch users.
  • Azerbaijani FM receives credentials from ambassador of Belarus
    27.08.2015 17:51
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27


    Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov received credentials of the newly appointed Ambassador of Belarus to Azerbaijan Gennady Ahramovich, the ministry told Trend Aug.27.

    At the meeting, the ambassador handed a copy of his credentials over to the foreign minister.

    The ambassador noted that he will make every effort for the development of bilateral relations during his diplomatic activity.

    Mammadyarov wished Ahramovich successes in his diplomatic activities.

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  • NATO training center launched in Georgia
    27.08.2015 17:51
    "Cooperation in the future will deepen."

    On August 27, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili opened a joint training center in Tbilisi.

    Oxu.Az reports referring to "News-Georgia", Georgian troops, as well as member states and partners of NATO will be trained in a training center. The establishment of this center provides a package of measures to encourage Georgia in its quest for membership in the alliance. It was approved at the NATO summit in Wales in September 2014.

    "We hope that this new collaboration tool will contribute to the deepening of relations between Georgia and NATO," Garibashvili said.

    The opening ceremony was held at the National Training Center "Krtsanisi" (near Tbilisi). The event was attended by the president of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili, Minister of Defence Tinatin Khidasheli and other members of the government, representatives of the armed forces, as well as the diplomatic corps and the North Atlantic alliance.

    "Cooperation in the future will deepen. Georgia and NATO are partners, we will do our best to get the most out of the training which the center will offer the audience," Stoltenberg said.
  • Poroshenko plans to visit Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 17:50
    Press service of Ukrainian Presidential Administration: The visit date is being discussed with the Azerbaijani side

    President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko is planning to visit Azerbaijan, the press service of the Ukrainian Presidential Administration told APA on Aug.27.

    Currently, the visit date is being discussed with the Azerbaijani side, according to the press service.

    "The Ukrainian president always emphasizes the development and strengthening of strategic partnership with Azerbaijan," said the press service.
  • Low-cost Turkey-Azerbaijan flights to become available soon
    27.08.2015 17:43
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    Turkish low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines received permission from Azerbaijani side to operate flights to the country, the Azerbaijan Airlines (AZAL) told Trend August 27.

    AZAL said the request by Pegasus to carry out the flights from Turkey's Istanbul to Azerbaijan's Gabala and back was granted and the appropriate airport slots were approved.

    "The decision regarding the date of start of flights on the route depends on the Turkish side," said AZAL. "It is also possible that in winter this year one of the Turkish carriers will start operating flights to Lankaran."

    AZAL also said that the regular flights between the two countries get approved by intergovernmental agreements.

    "A corresponding agreement between the civil aviation authorities of Azerbaijan and Turkey was signed November 2014, and currently its terms are being fulfilled by both parties," the Azerbaijani airline further told Trend.

    The airline also said it continues to closely cooperate with Turkish Airlines, which is carrying out flights to Baku, Ganja and Nakhchivan.

    Edited by SI

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  • Azerbaijanв's business opportunities presented in Italy
    27.08.2015 17:37
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Anvar Mammadov - Trend:

    Azerbaijan is one of Italy's main trade partners, Manuela Traldi, Italy-Azerbaijan Trade Institute ITAZERCOM head, said at a presentation entitled "Investments in Azerbaijan: Business Environment and Opportunities", organized by the Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation (AZPROMO) and the Italy-Azerbaijan Trade Institute (ITAZERCOM), the Azerbaijani Ministry of Economy and Industry said August 27.

    The presentation was held as part of the EXPO-2015 international exhibition in the Italian city of Milan.

    Traldi said that Azerbaijan is implementing major projects in various sectors of the economy, which also involve the Italian companies.

    She stressed the importance of holding business meetings, exhibitions and other joint events in the development of economic relations between Azerbaijan and Italy.

    Then AZPROMO head Rufat Mammadov made a presentation on the investment environment and business opportunities of Azerbaijan. He informed the participants about the economy of the country and Azerbaijan-Italy economic and trade relations.

    He said that as a result of the successfully carried out socio-economic policy, Azerbaijan has achieved sustainable economic growth. The country has created a favorable investment and business environment, which led to its becoming a foreign investor.

    The presentations of the Azerbaijan Investment Company's activity, Sumgait Chemical Industrial Park, Balakhani Industrial Park also took place at the event.

    In addition, the participants got acquainted with Azerbaijani pavilion at EXPO-2015.

    Milan Expo-2015 International Exhibition has operated since May 1. Some 145 countries are taking part in the current exhibition, held under the moto "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life". Of these, only 54 countries, including Azerbaijan, are represented by a national pavilion. Other countries are represented by stands at the exhibition.

    World Expo exhibitions have been held since 1851. They are considered to be the third largest international event after the Olympic Games and the FIFA World Cup by the number of visitors coming from around the world.

    Edited by CN


    Follow the author on Twitter: @Anvar_Mammadov

    Follow us on Twitter @
  • Iranв's inflation rate hits15.4%-CBI
    27.08.2015 17:35
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 26

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    The Central Bank of Iran (CBI) announced that the inflation rate in the urban area for the 12-month period to the fifth Iranian calendar month of Mordad (ended on Aug. 22) hit 15.4 percent, 0.2 percent less compared to preceding month.

    However, the Statistical Center of Iran has put the inflation rate for the 12-month period to Mordad 13.8 percent, 0.3 percent less than the previous month.

    The country's point-to-point inflation in the mentioned month was 12.6 percent, the CBI said August 26.

    The point-to-point inflation rate statistics identify the rate between distinct points in time, such as the inflation rate at the end of a month compared to the rate of inflation at the end of the same month in the previous year.

    The Central Bank also said that the consumer price index (CPI) in Iran's urban areas stood at 224.4 units in the fifth month of the current fiscal year, which is 0.1 percent less than its preceding month.

    Meanwhile the Statistical Center of Iran put the figure at 215, which comes with a growth of 0.5 percent compared to the preceding month.

    The index for foods and drinks shows a fall by 2.7 percent compared to the preceding month and a growth of 12 percent when compared to the same time last year, according to the CBI.

    The inflation rate in Iran in 2005 was about 10.4 percent, but in mid-2013, when Iranian president Hassan Rouhani came to power, the inflation rate and point-to-point inflation rate were 37.5 percent and 44 percent, respectively.

    Rouhani has promised to decrease the inflation rate to five percent in the Iranian fiscal year of 1395 (to end on March 20, 2017).

    Edited by CN

    Follow the author on Twitter: @UmidNiayesh

    Stay up to date with latest Iran news on our specialized Facebook page

    Follow us on Twitter @
  • Turkmenistan begins regulating urban planning
    27.08.2015 17:35
    Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, Aug. 27

    By Huseyn Hasanov- Trend:

    A law on urban planning has entered into force in Turkmenistan, a document published by the media says.

    This law establishes the legal, economic and organizational basis of the relations arising while implementing the urban planning.

    The quality of construction work on the facilities which are being constructed, their architectural design, reliability and safety of buildings, environmental issues must strictly comply with the state urban planning regulations and rules, technical regulations, Turkmen Dovlet Habarlary state news agency said.

    The new law covers the main areas of urban planning.

    The total cost of buildings being constructed in Turkmenistan under contract today exceeds $50 billion. Among the large projects is the construction of the Turkmenbashi international sea port, and the Olympic Village in Ashgabat.

    Edited by CN

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  • Cyber fraud via WhatsApp plagues Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 17:35
    By Vusala Abbasova - AzerNews

    The worldwide popular application WhatsApp Messenger, with over 800 million active users, has become a part of our daily lives, making interactions between people much easier.

    Being one of the most used applications on Android, iPhone, BlackBerry and other devices that work with the Android platform, it helps us connect with people via text message (SMS) and gives us the option to share music videos and pictures for free along with its many other uses.

    Undoubtedly, the WhatsApp messenger application has many advantages, but at the same time it has become a target for cyber criminals.

    Recently, Azerbaijani users of WhatsApp have become the victims of cyber scammers circulating fake messages, according to the Electronic Security Center under Azerbaijan's Communications and High Technologies Ministry.

    These messages invite users to test the new calling feature or other services that fill the phones with dangerous malware allowing cyber scammers illicitly earn money.

    Beforehand, the victim's phone number is included in a specially created WhatsApp group.

    Messages accompanied by links to Download Now! or Click on this message! in this group contain a local phone number ( 994XXXXXXXXX) and information about the availability of new screensavers and emoticons.

    Using these means, the cyber scammers try to attract the attention of their victims.

    If the user clicks the link, then he/she will be immediately forwarded to the several Web addresses that will invite the user to indicate his/her phone number. The user will then be subscribed to the service and a certain amount from his/her balance will be withdrawn for connection.

    Furthermore, becoming a victim of fraud, the subscriber will bear financial losses every day through these services.

    In some cases, WhatsApp users were offered links to ''continue'' or ''download,'' and after clicking on this link, a new SMS will open offering the user a chance to subscribe to the service by replying to the message.

    There are around 100,000 of local fans of the WhatsApp Messenger application in Azerbaijan, according to the Socialbakers website.

    The Electronic Security Center encourages users to be vigilant in order to protect themselves from cyber scammers.

    Unwanted messages come in many forms, such as spam, hoaxes and others to your device in order to try to deceive you and prompt you to act in a certain way.

    Try not to indicate your personal data, especially credit card numbers, phone numbers, and other information to suspicious messages or websites.

    If you receive a message with any proposition from an unknown contact, then don't call the contact, as it will charge you premium rates.
  • SCO countries to discuss combating cybercrime
    27.08.2015 17:34
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Aug. 27

    By Demir Azizov- Trend:

    Prosecutors General of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member-states will discuss the relevant aspects of cooperation in combating cybercrime between the competent bodies of their countries during a meeting in Astana, the foreign ministry of Uzbekistan said.

    The 13th session will be held on August 27-28. The agenda also includes the issues of combating illegal use of the Internet, smuggling of drugs and psychotropic substances across the border, the statement said.

    The meeting will take place in accordance with the decision of the 12th meeting of Prosecutors General of the SCO countries (Tashkent, October 2014).

    The delegation of Uzbekistan will be headed by Attorney General of the Republic Ihtiyor Abdullayev at this meeting.

    The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) was established in 2001. It is a permanent intergovernmental international organization. The SCO members are China, Kazakhstan, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

    Afghanistan, Iran, Mongolia and Belarus are the SCO observer-countries, while Turkey, Sri Lanka, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Nepal, and Cambodia are dialogue partners.

    Edited by CN

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  • Azerbaijani, Turkish, Turkmen FMs to hold trilateral meeting
    27.08.2015 17:28
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Seba Agahyeva - Trend:

    The foreign ministers of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan will discuss important political and economic issues in Antalya August 28, the Turkish foreign ministry said.

    The sides will also consider the implementation of the decisions taken at previous meetings.

    Moreover, the foreign ministers of these countries will hold bilateral meetings in Antalya.

    The previous meeting of the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan Elmar Mammadyarov, Mevlut Cavusoglu and Rashid Meredov was held in Kuwait in May 2015 as part of the 42nd session of the foreign ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

    The first meeting in this format was held in Baku in 2014. Baku Declaration was adopted following this meeting.

    The cooperation of the countries covers a wide range of issues, including energy, tourism, humanitarian sphere and politics.

    There are such formats of meetings as Azerbaijan-Turkey-Georgia, Azerbaijan-Turkey-Iran. The summits of foreign ministers and presidents of these countries were held.

    Edited by CN

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  • Turkey cancels visa-free travel for Libyans
    27.08.2015 17:28
    Turkey has cancelled visa-free travel for Libyan nationals, the Foreign Ministry said on Thursday.

    The 2009 agreement meant Turkey was one of the few countries Libyans could travel to without a visa, Anadolu Agency reports.

    Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic told journalists in Ankara that from Sept. 24 Libyans would need a visa to enter Turkey. He said the decision was due to security concerns and political uncertainty in Libya.

    "The removal of visa-free travel does not mean any change in Turkey's approach towards the Libyan people," Bilgic said, adding Turkey would continue to support its "brother" Libyans.
  • Azerbaijan suspends exports of meat
    27.08.2015 17:21
    SCC has disseminated an information.

    Since the beginning of this year, Azerbaijan imported meat and food products in the amount of $ 10,992,000.

    Oxu.Az reports referring to the State Customs Committee that it is 11.02% less than the same period last year.

    In addition, Azerbaijan has not exported meat during last 7 months. For the same period last year Azerbaijan has exported goods for $ 172 380.

    As for meat production, according to statment of the State Statistics Committee regarding the above-mentioned period, the country produced 165 300 tons of meat (including poultry), which exceeds last year's figure by 1.9%.

    Some time ago, the head of the State Service for the veterinary supervision of the Ministry of Agriculture Yolchu Khanveli told that in anticipation of the holiday Gurban Bayram in the point of sale vendors will need to present a veterinary documents before their products will be approved for sale.
  • OPEC to keep "no output cut" policy
    27.08.2015 17:21
    Baku, Azerbaijan, August 27

    By Aygun Badalova - Trend:

    OPEC will remain steadfast in its policy of maintaining high output, despite the renewed slump in oil prices and the potential return of exports from Iran, Tom Pugh, economist at British economic research and consulting company Capital Economics believes.

    "The core Gulf members of the cartel are in a strong enough financial position to weather an extended period of lower oil prices," Pugh said in the report obtained by Trend. "What's more, lower prices now should boost global economic growth and demand as well as curtailing alternative sources of production, not least US shale, which should lead to higher prices in the future."

    Pugh noted that as oil prices continue to fall the calls for an emergency OPEC meeting and output target cuts grow stronger.

    Last week Iran's Oil Minister, Bijan Zanganeh said that holding an emergency OPEC meeting may be "effective" in stabilizing the oil price.

    "Iran endorses an emergency OPEC meeting and would not disagree with it," Zanganeh told reporters in Tehran.

    According to some OPEC delegates, a meeting is unlikely unless Saudi Arabia is in favor, Reuters reported. The country is the world's major oil exporter and prefers to keep its market share rather than cut output to support prices.

    OPEC has roughly split into two groups, Pugh said in a report.

    "The first group wants to maintain the current output target. This group consists mainly of the wealthier Gulf countries, that is, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE. The second group consists of the poorer members of OPEC who want a cut in production, namely Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Algeria, Venezuela, Libya, Angola and Ecuador."

    "The second group outnumber the first by 2-1 and could call an emergency meeting if they wished. (It only needs a simple majority of the 12 members to call an emergency meeting.) But it is largely seen as pointless without the support of Saudi Arabia, by far the group's largest producer," Pugh said.

    In addition, none of the second group are really in a position to cut their own output, according to the economist.

    "Indeed, of the eight countries we put in the second group, both Iran and Iraq are recovering from decades of sanctions and have said they actively plan to pump as much oil as possible, regardless of the price. Libyan output remains disrupted by fighting so barely has any output to cut, and the African and South American members are struggling financially so they need to continue pumping at full blast to maximize revenues," he said in a report.

    "As a result, when these countries call for a cut in the production target, they are really calling for Saudi Arabia and its allies to reduce output," Pugh said. And he doubts that the first group's countries are altruistic enough "to cut their production purely to benefit the rest of OPEC and non-OPEC producers, especially as the prime beneficiary would be Saudi Arabia's long term rival, Iran."

    He also believes that even if an emergency meeting is called, and a production target cut is agreed upon, there is little chance of the group actually sticking to it.

    OPEC is already producing about 2 million barrels per day over its quota. Indeed, the quota has historically been largely seen as a floor rather than a ceiling. High OPEC output should therefore help to prevent prices from rebounding sharply even as China fears recede and demand recovers, Pugh said.

    Currently, OPEC's quota for oil production is 30 million barrels per day. International Energy Agency's latest data show that OPEC crude production fell in July by 15,000 barrels a day to 31.79 million barrels a day.

    Despite the fall, cartel's production held steady near a three-year high, according to the agency.

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  • President allocates AZN 3mln
    27.08.2015 17:21
    President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree on additional measures for construction of Askerabad-Mugan motor road in Bilasuvar.

    Oxu.Az reports with reference to the official website of the head of state that AZN 3mln will be allocated to the executive power of Bilasuvar from the state budget of Azerbaijan for 2015 for the further construction of Askerabad-Mugan motor road which connects 4 settlements with 10,000-population.

    The Ministry of Finance is empowered to ensure financing and the Cabinet of Ministers to settle the issues emanating from the decree.
  • Azerbaijani, Turkish, Turkmen FMs to hold trilateral meeting
    27.08.2015 16:55
    The Foreign Ministers of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan Elmar Mammadyarov, Mevlut Cavusoglu and Rashid Meredov will meet on August 28.

    Oxu.Az reports citing Turkish media that the statement came from spokesman for the Foreign Ministry of Turkey Tanju Bilgic.

    He said the sides will exchange views on execution of decisions adopted at the session in Ashkhabat.

    Earlier on 29 January of this year Ashkhabat hosted a trilateral meeting which focused on development of cooperation in political, economic, energy, transport and humanitarian spheres.
  • 2015 ITTF European Championships draw revealed
    27.08.2015 16:42
    The draw for the 2015 International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) European Championships to take place in Ekaterinburg, Russia, next month.

    In the Men's Championships Division - Group A leading name is title holder, team of Portugal. They will face challenge from the players from France, Hungary and Serbia. From this group only France reached round of 8 last year in Portugal.

    Lisbonв's runner ups, team of Germany will face Spain, Poland and Ukraine. Spain also played in the quarterfinal last year.

    Top seeded team in Group C is Sweden. They will have tough task to face hosts, Austria and Romania.

    Croatia, also won bronze in Portugal. In the Group D are also Belarus, Greece and Czech Republic.

    In Women's Championships Division - Group A, title holders, team of Germany will face Belarus, Czech Republic and Slovakia.

    Runners up, Austria is in the Group B with Romania, France and Serbia.

    In Group C Poland will meet Hungary, Russia and Luxembourg. Sweden are in the Group D with Netherlands, Portugal and Ukraine.

    /By AzerTac/
  • Czech Republic eyes expansion of economic co-op with Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 16:41
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Seba Aghayeva - Trend:

    The Czech Republic will present new economic cooperation proposals to Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani ambassador to the Czech Republic Farid Shafiyev told Trend Aug. 27.

    "The country's government pins great hopes for increasing the number of the Czech companies in such areas of Azerbaijan as agriculture, construction, transport infrastructure and others," he said.

    "The cooperation prospects between the two countries will be discussed during Czech President Milos Zeman's official visit to Azerbaijan, scheduled for September 14-15," the diplomat said.

    During the visit the president will be accompanied by a delegation of some 60 representatives of business circles. This testifies to the country's interest in developing the cooperation with Azerbaijan.

    Shafiyev said that the Czech businessmen will meet with their Azerbaijani counterparts. The Czech companies have a number of projects that they will present to his Azerbaijani colleagues during these meetings.

    The governments of the two countries currently continue to work on projects of bilateral documents to be signed during the visit as well, said the ambassador.

    Czech companies are already present in Azerbaijan and implement contracts worth about $1 billion, the diplomat said earlier. Implementation of one contract for the construction of Baku-Guba highway worth $300 million has been completed, according to him.

    The ambassador went on to add that the Czech Republic is also open for Azerbaijani investments.

    Over the last 10 years, foreign companies, including the Azerbaijani ones, have showed interest for real estate in the Czech Republic, particularly in Karlovy Vary spa town, he said.

    The forthcoming visit of the Czech president to Azerbaijan will give an additional impetus to relations between the two countries, the ambassador said.

    In January-July 2015, the trade turnover between the two countries amounted to $440.93 million, according to the State Customs Committee (SCC) of Azerbaijan.

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  • Hungarian Wizz Air plans to resume flights to Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 16:41
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    Hungarian budget airline Wizz Air told Azerbaijan Airlines (AZAL) CJSC about its intention to resume flights to Azerbaijan in March 2016, the press service of CJSC told Trend August 27.

    Talks of the sides on the resumption of flights of the Hungarian airline to Azerbaijan will take place in the near future, AZAL said.

    "The Azerbaijani side agreed to the implementation of flights by Wizz Air in March 2016," the press-service said. "It should be noted that the Azerbaijani side has repeatedly appealed to Wizz Air with a proposal for implementation of flights in summer and winter of 2015, but received no response."

    Direct flights between Baku and Budapest were conducted in accordance with the memorandum of cooperation signed by the civil aviation administrations of the two countries, but then Wizz Air stopped implementation of flights to Baku.

    The resumption of flights between Baku and Budapest was postponed for an indefinite term.

    Edited by CN


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  • Already 33,412 persons undergo health check for premarriage certificate
    27.08.2015 16:16
    The Ministry of Health of Azerbaijan informed about the first results of the introduced regulation (effective from 1 June) on compulsory medical examination of persons wishing to marry.

    According to the Ministry, 33,412 people underwent medical examination and received premarriage health certificate for the expired period.

    The Cabinet Ministers established the diseases which are an obstacle to marriage.
  • Azerbaijani, Turkish and Turkmen FMs to meet in Antalya
    27.08.2015 15:54
    On August 28, Antalya will host a trilateral meeting between the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tanju Bilgic told reporters in Ankara, Ihlas news agency reported.

    The upcoming meeting in Antalya is of regional importance, the spokesperson said, adding "the ministers will discuss implementation of the decisions adopted at the Ashgabat meeting dated 29 January 2015.
  • Armenian separatists not to have military academy
    27.08.2015 15:51
    Their sponsor has suspended funding.

    According to, reports quoting the village administration that the construction of the Military Academy named after Suvorov and Madatov has been suspended for three months in the Vank village of the unrecognized "Nagorno-Karabakh".

    Construction has been financed by Russian businessman of Armenian origin Levon Hayrapetyan, who is under house arrest in Moscow.

    According to the administration, the reasons for the suspension and date of resumption of construction are unknown to them.

    It should be noted that on July 24, the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation filed Hayrapetyan a claim on illegal mining of funds and money laundering, then - on the fraud. Later Hayrapetyan was placed under house arrest.
  • Tour operators of Armenia and Turkey discuss cooperation
    27.08.2015 15:51
    The border between the two countries was closed in 1993.

    Oxu.Az reports quoting RIA Novosti that according to the press service of the US embassy, US Ambassador to Armenia Richard Mills took part in the meeting the Armenian and Turkish network operator (TATON) held in Yerevan, aimed at overcoming the problems in the cross-border cooperation.

    "One of the most effective impetus for cooperation are business interests. The purpose of the association, aimed at the promotion of business and business interests in the communities of Armenia and Turkey, is commendable," the press service quoted Mills' speech at the meeting.

    According to the press service, Armenian and Turkish tour operators already offer cross-border travel.

    Turkish tour operators seeking to diversify the traditional tourist packages, as the Armenian try to expand opportunities, offering travel to more than one country.

    TATON Network was formed in the framework of the USAID (United States Agency for International Development) "Bridges", which aims to promote cross-border tourism through economic activity.

    Turkey and Armenia have no diplomatic relations, the border between the two countries was closed in 1993 on the initiative of official Ankara.
  • Iran calls on to realize all agreements with Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 15:42
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Temkin Jafarov - Trend:

    Azerbaijan and Iran have reached very good agreements to enhance cooperation, but they haven't been realized completely yet, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asian and Pacific Affairs Ebrahim Rahimpour told Trend in Tehran August 27.

    Rahimpour, who is also Iranian president's special representative for Caspian Sea affairs, expressed hope that thanks to mutual visits and negotiations of the two countries' officials, the said agreements will soon be fully realized.

    He added that Iran was one of the first countries to recognize Azerbaijan's independence, and has supported it from the very first days of independence.

    The deputy foreign minister said that in particular from the first days of Azerbaijan's independence, Iran has supported and assisted the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic (NAR).

    Rahimpour believes that in 23 years, the peak of relations between the two countries accounted for the past few years, as a result of strong will shown by the leadership of two countries.

    "Both countries have shown strong will to expand cooperation," said the deputy minister.

    Rahimpour went on to add that the two countries have not yet fully achieved the goals for the expansion of relations.

    He called on Iranian officials and friendly Azerbaijan to be more active towards the interests of their peoples using the existing potential of the two countries.

    "We must take advantage of the existing potential not only for the sake of the interests of the two countries, but also the region, providing peace in it," said Rahimpour. "I hope that the mutual visits of the officials of the two countries will give their results."

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  • SOCAR keen to purchase share from DESFA
    27.08.2015 15:42
    SOCAR is interested in purchasing share from DESFA.

    Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (HRADF) and Hellenic Petroleum S.A. have met State Oil Company of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOCAR), which confirmed its interest for the completion of the transaction with the extension, until December 21,2015, of the Share Purchase Agreement and the guarantee letter of euro;40 million.

    The transaction amounting to euro;400 million concerns the sale of a 66% stake of DESFA, 31% by HRADF and 35% by Hellenic Petroleum.

    The completion of the transaction is pending approvals by the relevant European Union and national authorities.

    All parties reiterated their strong will and commitment to conclude this transaction as soon as possible.
  • Turkmenistan supplies energy to Afghanistan at preferential prices
    27.08.2015 15:34
    Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, Aug. 27

    By Huseyn Hasanov- Trend:

    Turkmenistan supplies electric power, as well as liquefied natural gas at preferential prices to Afghanistan, the government of Turkmenistan said August 27.

    It builds social facilities, in particular, medical and educational facilities, in the neighboring country. It assists in the training of young people and staff.

    President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov will pay his official visit to Afghanistan August 27.

    "Turkmenistan and Afghanistan attach special attention to the forthcoming bilateral summit, designed to become a new important action in the expansion and intensification of the interstate cooperation," a statement said.

    Turkmenistan stands for rendering active international support to the government of Afghanistan, and promotes the effective integration of this country into regional and international economic processes by taking concrete actions to restore the Afghan economy and social infrastructure.

    The creative initiatives of Turkmenistan voiced at the sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations and other major international forums, as well as large-scale projects cited by the Turkmen side in particular, such as the construction of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline are the proof of it.

    "The practical implementation of the transnational energy project will become a real contribution to the formation of modern architecture of global energy security and at the same time will directly contribute to solving actual social problems in neighboring Afghanistan, in particular the ones on creation of new jobs," said the message.

    The cooperation between the two countries in the transport sector in this aspect is no less important. One can mention the construction of Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Tajikistan railway launched in 2013 as an illustrative example.

    Edited by CN

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  • Decks cleared for Indiaв's role in Iranian port
    27.08.2015 15:34
    The decks have been cleared for India to lease and develop the strategically important Iranian port of Chabahar, The Hindu reported.

    This will provide an alternative route for India to trade with Afghanistan and Central Asia, bypassing Pakistan. The obstructions that the India-Iran agreement on the port had run into, after it was announced in May, got sorted last week during Iran Foreign Minister Javad Zarif's visit, said Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari.

    "The Prime Minister has spoken to the Iran governmenthellip;. and 8 to 10 days ago the Iranian Foreign Minister came and met mehellip; we have solved the problem," Mr. Gadkari said without divulging details. Under the Memorandum of Understanding, Chabahar port will be used to ship crude oil and urea, greatly reducing transportation costs for importing these two commodities. The port is to be developed via a special purpose vehicle, which will be owned by the two sides with an investment of around $85 million. A multi-purpose cargo and container terminal is to be developed at the port.

    India's presence in Chabahar will offset the Chinese presence in the Pakistani port of Gwadar. It also takes advantage of the centuries-old connection with Iran, especially at a time when Iran's economic sanctions are expected to be lifted, thanks to the nuclear deal it signed with the West. Weeks ahead of signing the MoU, the Iranian government had leased the port for upgradation to a private company, Aria Badaner. This put a question mark on the Indo-Iranian deal and caused alarm in Indian quarters as the agreement with Aria Badaner had taken place in March, while the MoU was signed in May between Mr. Gadkari and Iran's Minister for Transport and Urban Development Dr. Abbas Ahmad Akhoundi.

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  • Heydar Aliyev Foundation organizes fun day for children
    27.08.2015 15:13
    By Nigar Orujova - AzerNews

    The Heydar Aliyev Foundation organized another fun day of activities for children from orphanages and the Rehabilitation Center for Children with Down Syndrome in Baku on August 26.

    The event gathered 200 children from children's orphanages No. 1 in Nizami district, No. 3 in Khatai district, No.2 in Surakhani district, along with the Rehabilitation Center for Children with Down Syndrome.

    The heroes of various fairy tales greeted the children, who were brought to the event on special buses.

    The fun-filled event, in turn, brought joy to the kids. These residents of orphanages and children in need of special care willingly played a variety of games and shared their joy with others with sincerity.

    The children enjoyed sports competitions and other entertaining programs.

    A truly festive atmosphere was created at the event. Children performed a variety of dances and songs and demonstrated their abilities.

    The Foundation also provided the kids with gifts.

    The Heydar Aliyev Foundation made the comprehensive care of the younger generation and the pursuit of various humanitarian actions as one of its priorities.

    Various events for children held under initiative of the Foundation are aimed at helping kids from families of internally displaced persons, as well as for children with diabetes and thalassemia. Moreover, the Foundation has provided funding for the reconstruction of orphanages and boarding schools throughout the country, implemented various projects for their students, and built new schools.
  • Kazakhstan, IAEA ink deal on LEU bank
    27.08.2015 15:13
    By Aynur Karimova - AzerNews

    Kazakhstan and the International Atomic Energy Agency have signed an agreement to establish a low-enriched uranium bank in the country, RIA Novosti reported on August 27.

    The deal was signed by Kazakh Foreign Minister Erlan Idrisov and IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano in Kazakhstanв's capital Astana on August 27.

    "A lot of work remains to be done. But after the signing [of the agreement] today, we have a legal framework, so we can move forward together to begin full-scale implementation [of the agreement]. I am very grateful to all the donors, including the government of Kazakhstan, because their contribution has made the establishment of the IAEA LEU bank possible," Amano said after the signing of the agreement.

    Kazakhstan initiated the placement of the international LEU bank in its territory under the auspices of IAEA in 2009.

    Earlier Timur Zhantikin, the deputy chairman of the Atomic Control Committee at Kazakhstanв's Energy Ministry said the actual arrival of nuclear material in Kazakhstan is expected in 2017.

    The LEU bank will be based on Kazakhstanв's Ulba Metallurgical Plant. The UMP is a member of the Kazatomprom National Atomic Company and produces fuel pellets for nuclear power plants.

    The bank hopes to store up to 90 metric tons of the low-enriched uranium for the production of gasified fuel elements to be used in nuclear power plants that do not pose any radiation threat. Any country seeking to develop nuclear energy will be able to request nuclear fuel from Kazakhstan.

    Some $150 million was allocated by the Nuclear Threat Initiative non-profit organization ($50 million), the Norwegian government ($5 million), the U.S. ($49 million), the UAE ($10 million), the EU (up to 25 million euros), Kuwait ($10 million), as well as Kazakhstan ($400,000) for the establishment and operation of the LEU bank for at least 10 years.The LEU can be used to make enough nuclear fuel to power a large city for three years. It will also provide Member States with additional confidence in their ability to obtain nuclear fuel in an assured and predictable manner.

    The nuclear bank will guarantee countries access to the uranium they need for their civilian nuclear programs without having to develop enrichment processes themselves.

    The bank achieves two worthwhile goals at the same time. It will encourage nuclear power, which will help drive the switch to low-carbon economic growth, and it will also help prevent the spread of nuclear weapons-capable technologies and the risks that they bring to global security.
  • Democratic Party of Azerbaijan names candidates for election
    27.08.2015 15:12
    By Amina Nazarli - AzerNews

    The Democratic Party of Azerbaijan (DPA) has disclosed a preliminary list of 15 candidates who will participate in the upcoming parliamentary election, the party told Trend.

    The first meeting of the central electoral staff, established by the DPA to determine candidates for the Azerbaijani parliamentary election, was held on August 26.

    A preliminary list of candidates was drawn at the meeting. A decision was taken to hold a meeting of the supreme assembly of the party on September 5. Issues related to the upcoming election will be discussed.

    DPA was established in 1991 in Nakhchivan.

    Azerbaijan has 55 officially registered political parties. The parliamentary election in Azerbaijan is scheduled for November.

    In order to conduct transparent elections, more than 1,000 cameras are expected to be installed in polling stations in Azerbaijani regions and Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic. Some 296 cameras will be installed in Baku polling stations alone.

    The government takes necessary measures for transparency in elections both for international institutions and the public, Central Election Commission chairman Mazahir Panahov said earlier.

    "Azerbaijan has taken the necessary steps for transparency in this sphere, and cameras have been installed on 20 percent of polling stations. Since the beginning of the election, their work can be observed online anywhere in the world,'' he said.
  • Rhythmic festival comes to end in Sheki
    27.08.2015 15:12
    By Amina Nazarli - AzerNews

    The musical ''Nagara 2015'' International Percussion Instruments Festival solemnly came to end in the countryв's ancient city of Sheki on August 26.

    Supported by the Culture and Tourism Ministry, Sheki City Executive Power, and the ''Almus Production'' company, the rhythmical event gathered musicians from Turkey, Uzbekistan, and Iran to the Sheki Summer Theatre.

    Sheki Executive Authority head Elkhan Usubov said that the event, being held in the country for the third time, is an important occasion in the cultural history of Sheki.

    Famous Azerbaijani percussionists Natiq Rhythm Group gave spectacular concert for music lovers. The concert started with a rhythmic composition based on the folk song ''Sari Gelin.''

    Spectators also enjoyed the exciting dances accompanied by national music performed by the group.

    Toward the end, other participants such as the Uzbek ''Abbos'' group, Turkeyв's ''Istanbul Harem'' and Iranв's ''Lian'' group also joined the Natiq Rhythm Group in providing an unforgettable musical experience.

    The Natiq Rhythm Group, led by prominent Azerbaijani drummer Natig Shirinov, was found in 2001. Throughout their more than 15 years of activity, the group toured the world, giving concerts in Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland, the U.S., Holland, Turkey, Taiwan, South Korea, and the UAE.

    The roots of percussion instruments in Azerbaijan go back to primitive societies.

    The ''Gaval dash'' (tambourine-stone), located in one of the oldest places of human habitation, Gobustan, is a sample of the ancient instruments pervasive in the region at the time. When striking the stone with your hand or an object, it emits a sound reminiscent of a drum tone.

    The nagara is a folk drum that is played with bare hands. It is one of the most popular percussion instruments of Azerbaijani folk music.

    This instrument is described in the Early Middle Age Azerbaijani literary epic, dated to the 16th century "Kitabi Dada Gorgud'', a heroic epic poem of the Turkic tribal group Oguz.
  • Kazakhstan calls on Azerbaijani people to join anti-nuclear campaign
    27.08.2015 14:57
    Kazakhstan calls on the Azerbaijani people to join campaign it has launched in the spirit of respect for those killed with nuclear weapons, the Kazakh embassy in Azerbaijan told APA.

    The embassy said the campaign, which is being held seventh year already, is called ATOM Project and aims to urge the whole world to stop the production of nuclear weapons.

    "The campaign calls on the world population to hold a minute of silence of respect for victims of nuclear weapon tests. The process takes place annually on 29 August at 11:05 Astana time, the moment when the hands of clocks form the letter V (meaning victory). This symbolizes victory in the fight against the nuclear weapon and over fear," said the embassy.
  • 90 places remain vacant for Hajj pilgrimage from Azerbaijan
    27.08.2015 14:34
    The deadline for document submission is late August

    The pilgrim quota allocated for the Hajj pilgrimage in Azerbaijan this year is about to be filled, the Caucasian Muslims Office (CMO) told APA.

    Currently, 90 places are vacant. 30 places from cheaper option are vacant, 60 places from expensive option.

    The quote is 2,400. The deadline for submission of documents is the end of this month.

    Note that, submission of documents this year began on March 11. The Hajj pilgrimage from Azerbaijan will begin on September 11. Pilgrims are offered two forms of pilgrimage as usual. One option, which offers more prestigious hotels where guests can have much more expensive meals and stay in four-bed rooms, will coast AZN 5,750. The other, which offers relatively cheaper hotels with six-bed rooms, will coast AZN 4,700. The documents required of pilgrims include the passport, a copy of the national identification card, 4 3x4 photos and a health certificate. Submission of documents can only be done at the CMO. And because of conflicts in the Middle East, the pilgrimage process will take place via air only. The flights will be carried out by AZAL. The payment for Hajj pilgrimage will be made in US dollar.
  • Azerbaijani Deputy Premier visits Japan
    27.08.2015 14:33
    A delegation led by Azerbaijani Deputy Prime Minister, chairman of the State Committee for Refugees and IDP Affairs, chairman of the Republican Commission on International Humanitarian Aid Ali Hasanov has paid an official visit to Japan.

    A-five day official visit aims at further developing friendly relations and bilateral cooperation in the humanitarian sphere between the two countries, AzerTag reports.

    On the first day of his visit. the head of the Azerbaijani delegation met with Deputy Foreign Minister of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party Kentaro Sonoura. The sides exchanged views on the current state of relations between the two countries.

    Ali Hasanov hailed relations between the two countries as high, expressing gratitude on behalf of the Azerbaijani government for Japan's humanitarian aid to the country. Azerbaijani Deputy Premier stressed the importance of further continuing cooperation both bilaterally and within international organizations between the two countries, saying this issue is of great importance for both countries.

    Hailing development of cooperation between the two countries in recent years as rapid, Kentaro Sonoura underlined that high-level mutual visits between the two countries have been intensified. "These visits have positive impact on the development of mutual relations," he said. Mr. Sonoura added that Japan Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso's visit in May current year is of great importance in this respect.

    Touching upon the Armenia-Azerbaijan, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Ali Hasanov said that Armenia occupied twenty percent of Azerbaijani lands, as a result of which more than one million Azerbaijanis have become refugees and internally displaced people.

    Activities of OSCE Minsk Group which is involved in solving the dispute are still fruitless. Expressing his gratitude for Japan's fair position on the conflict, Mr. Hasanov said he believed in Japan's further supporting Azerbaijan in this issue.

    Japanese Deputy FM expressed his country's interest in establishing high-level relations with Azerbaijan. He noted that his country recognizes and respects Azerbaijan's territorial integrity and sovereignty.

    The meeting exchanged views on a number of issues of mutual interest.
  • Iranв's 10-year nuclear limits to start from Sept. 23
    27.08.2015 14:30
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 27

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    Imposing limits on the Islamic Republic's nuclear program will start from Sept. 23, the country's Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif said.

    Based on the nuclear deal between Iran and the six world powers, the 10-year limitations will start from Sept. 23 and at the end of the period the Islamic Republic's nuclear case will be officially closed, Zarif said, Iran 's Fars news agency reported August 27.

    After several months of talks, on July 14, Iran and the P5 1 (US, Russia, China, France, UK, and Germany) announced a final accord, curbing Iran 's nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of most international sanctions. Following the deal, members of the UN Security Council unanimously passed a resolution on July 20, endorsing the deal.

    The resolution is completely clear and all limitations on Iran 's nuclear program will be removed after 10 years, Zarif underlined.

    He further said that the imposed weapon and missile limitations against Iran could be lifted even earlier, if the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) approves.

    According to the UN Security Council resolution Iran will have to acquire permission from the UN Security Council for any arms deal it would like to make.

    Meanwhile the Islamic Republic President Hassan Rouhani said early this week that Iran will ignore the resolution if necessary. Tehran will buy and sell weapons wherever it deems necessary and does not care about any resolution, he asserted.

    The Iranian foreign minister also slammed the domestic critics of the nuclear deal, accusing them of trying to distort the achievement as a defeat.

    Edited by CN

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  • SOCAR Turkey Enerji to acquire stake in TANAP gas pipeline
    27.08.2015 14:22
    Istanbul, Turkey Aug. 27


    SOCAR Turkey Enerji plans to acquire a seven percent stake in TANAP gas pipeline, Kenan Yavuz, the head of SOCAR Turkey Enerji, told reporters in Istanbul Aug. 27, Trend's special correspondent said.

    Story still developing

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