The Slovenia Times

PM Calls on Azerbaijani Business Reps to Invest in Slovenia


Azerbaijani Economic Development Minister Shahin Mustafayev also called for stronger economic cooperation.

The pair pointed out in their opening addresses to around 200 participants of the meeting that trade figures have not been reflecting the many possibilities for cooperation. In 2008 Slovenian exports to Azerbaijan amounted to less than EUR 8m while there were no imports.

What is already the third business conference in slightly over three years is meant to change this, as Azerbaijan, rich in oil and gas, wishes to diversify its economy, 50% of whose revenues are now based on the oil industry.

Janša and Mustafayev also highlighted the need for an appropriate legal framework. While the double taxation avoidance agreement is already in place, the plan is to also sign an agreement on the protection of mutual investments.

This agreement is expected to boost Azerbaijani investment in Slovenia, as the country is stepping up investments, for now above all in its neighbourhood, while it sees Slovenia as a gateway to the EU.

Outlining some of Slovenia's reform measures, Janša said among other things that the corporate tax rate would be gradually lowered to 15% in the coming three years.

He highlighted opportunities in energy, telecommunication, the food industry, construction and tourism, describing Slovenia as one of the most interesting tourist destinations in the EU. Around 13,000 Azerbaijani tourists visited Slovenia in 2011.

The prime minister moreover pointed to Azerbaijani experience in the Caucasian-Caspian region which could be useful for Slovenian companies.

He also mentioned possibilities for cultural cooperation, including with the help of a memorandum on the cooperation between the Ljubljana and Baku universities signed today.

Several commercial agreements were signed as part of the conference as well.

Janša also met with President Ilham Aliyev, while a meeting with PM Artur Rasizade was scheduled for after the business conference.


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