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COP29 in Azerbaijan to spur Middle Corridor development

12 June 2024 [12:56] - TODAY.AZ
Nazrin Abdul

Hosting COP29 in Azerbaijan will give impetus to the "green development" of the Middle Corridor.

This idea was voiced at a conference dedicated to maximising the benefits of the Middle Corridor, organised by the Caspian Policy Centre in London, Azernews reports.

The event, attended by ambassadors of regional countries in Britain, the diplomatic corps in London, academic circles, economists, climate scientists, and media representatives, discussed priorities related to the Middle Corridor, views on ensuring sustainability and green development in the context of COP29, as well as the importance of cooperation between regional countries and with other states on these issues.

During the opening session, Afghan Nifti, the CEO of the Caspian Policy Centre, his advisor on Britain and former British diplomat David Moran, and James Sharp, a member of the Centre's Advisory Council and a former British diplomat, spoke about the economic, trade, and cooperation opportunities created by the Middle Corridor.

Ambassadors from Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, and Turkiye participated in the first ambassadors' panel of the conference.

Georgia's Ambassador, Sofio Katsavara, expressed support for her country's effective infrastructure projects like the Middle Corridor and highlighted the exemplary coordination between Azerbaijan and Georgia. She also touched upon the importance of peace and stability in the region for the development of the Middle Corridor.

Subsequently, Azerbaijan's Ambassador to Britain, Elin Suleymanov, discussed the importance of the Middle Corridor as a multimodal transport route, highlighting the significant role of exemplary cooperation between Azerbaijan and Georgia supported by Turkiye in the project's inception. The ambassador emphasised Azerbaijan's continuous contributions to the development of the Middle Corridor and outlined steps taken to increase cargo carrying capacity.

In the context of Azerbaijan hosting COP29, E. Suleymanov underscored the necessity of developing the Middle Corridor as a green corridor. He noted that the Baku International Sea Trade Port received a green port certificate from the UN Maritime Organisation. The Azerbaijani ambassador emphasised the importance of promoting continuous dialogue among the countries located along the Middle Corridor for the stable future of the region and avoiding divisive actions.

Touching on the ongoing peace process between Armenia and Azerbaijan, the ambassador noted that direct dialogue between the two countries is highly effective and tangible results are evident. He stated that the decision to host COP29 in Azerbaijan was made as a result of direct negotiations between the two countries. Highlighting that most of the countries located along the Middle Corridor are members of the Organisation of Turkic-Speaking Countries, Ambassador Suleymanov also noted that these countries are not only close partners for Azerbaijan but also close friends and brotherly countries.

Kazakhstan's Ambassador Maghzan Ilyasov emphasised the importance of discussing issues such as the reduction of water resources and the level of the Caspian Sea for the region during COP29.

Turkiye's Ambassador, Osman Koray Erta?, highlighted the commendable support of international institutions such as the World Bank, EBRD, and European Union to the Middle Corridor. He noted that within the framework of the peace process, the positive trend between Armenia and Azerbaijan, as well as between Armenia and Turkiye, further enhances the opportunities opened by the Middle Corridor. The Turkish ambassador added that his country is ready to support Azerbaijan in the direction of successfully hosting COP29.

Speaking at the second ambassadors' panel of the conference, Armenian Ambassador to Britain Varujan Nersesyan said that his country is interested in discussions dedicated to connectivity projects in the region.

Speaking on the same panel, the Kyrgyz ambassador drew attention to the importance of cooperation between countries located along the Middle Corridor.

Representatives of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the World Bank, "The City of London" Corporation, the British-Azerbaijani Chamber of Commerce, bp, the Institute of Export and International Trade in London, and the Centre for Strategic Studies in the Middle East and South Asia in Washington spoke at the expert panels of the conference. They shared their recommendations on what further steps would be useful for the development of the Middle Corridor in the Caspian Basin region and for the full use of the potential of the Middle Corridor in general, and how to ensure coordination with additional partners. The speakers congratulated Azerbaijan on hosting COP29 and emphasised that it is commendable that Azerbaijan shares responsibility for important international initiatives and successfully hosts international events.

bp's adviser on international affairs, Michael Denison, noted that Azerbaijan's commitment to all its international obligations for decades has made it a reliable and exemplary partner for other countries.

Chairman of the British-Azerbaijani Chamber of Commerce, John Paterson, said that under the leadership of President Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan has passed a successful and progressive development path, adding that Baku is one of the most beautiful and progressive cities in the world.


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