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Int'l experts highlight prospects of Azerbaijan's cultural economy development

20 September 2022 [17:59] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Laman Ismayilova

An international scientific-practical conference on "Cultural economy in Azerbaijan: Shusha - development impulses" is underway in Shusha, Azernews reports, citing Azertac.

The conference highlights the prospects for the cultural economy in Azerbaijan and is being held under the title of Think4Culture within the Year of Shusha.

Local and foreign experts in the field, from fifteen countries, including Turkiye, Britain, Israel, Germany, India, Kazakhstan, and other countries, are participating in the international conference.

The large-scale event was co-organized by the Culture Ministry and the Institute of Economics under the Ministry of Science and Education.

The conference started with an observation of a minute of silence to pay tribute to Azerbaijani martyrs, who died as a result of the recent Armenian provocation on the Azerbaijani-Armenian border.

Founder and head of several business accelerators and international innovation centers in Israel Tal Catran, First Deputy Culture Minister Elnur Aliyev, and Director of the Institute of Economics Tal Catran made opening speeches at the conference.

Israeli expert Tal Catran said that the past day was interesting for the guests. Both sad and happy feelings were experienced during the trip to liberated territories.

He pointed out that the guests were fascinated to see the rapid restoration of Karabakh and its return to its previous state.

"Today, around two trillion dollars of income is obtained from the culture and creative field in the world. This is exactly what we will discuss today at the conference. Discussions about the future of Karabakh will be held continuously," said Tal Catran.

First Deputy Culture Minister Elnur Aliyev said that the major purpose of holding such events is to enhance the development of cultural and creative industries in liberated territories.

He noted that the city of Shusha plays a great role in the culture of Azerbaijan. The city is the hometown of many great cultural figures, like Azerbaijan's prominent composer Uzeyir Hajibayli.

"The major objective of the conference is to reveal the potential of Azerbaijani culture. One of the distinctive aspects of Azerbaijani culture is its peace-loving nature. Our culture is humane and does not spread hatred and intolerance. We want our culture to take its place in the world's creative industry market, contribute to our economy, and the products created by cultural figures to be recognized worldwide. We have a great potential in the cultural economy," said Elnur Aliyev.

Director of the Institute of Economics Nazim Imanov said that before the conference, studies were conducted on the economy of culture. Interest in this field has already arisen mainly among scientists.

Cultural economy expert Ornela Ramasauskaite spoke on the topic of cultural revival in liberated lands. She stressed the importance of a statistical monitoring system for data collection in this field. She called to bring together more companies specialized in cultural economics.

Cultural revival & cultural economy in liberated territories

Next, a panel discussion on "Cultural revival and cultural economy in liberated lands" was held as part of the conference.

Multi-disciplinary designer Nej Nejla Guvenc, Corporate Finance, and Private Equity professional adviser for the investment and development Rahul Yadav, head of the International Relations Department at National Conservatory Jahangir Salimxanov, Experience UK Advisory Board and Executive Committee Member Emily Smith spoke at the panel moderated by Tal Catran.

Nej Nejla Guvenc shared her experiences in the field of creative culture in Turkiye. She said that non-governmental organizations should also work actively for the development of the cultural economy, and interest in this field has increased in Turkiye over recent years.

"Turkiye is a country that invests the most in the gaming sector in Europe this year. There is also a huge development in the field of non-fungible tokens (NFT). People are selling their creations virtually in the form of NFTs. I think that work should be done in this field in Azerbaijan as well," she said.

Rahul Yadav said that Shusha has great potential in the field of cultural economy. He noted that Shusha should become a special platform. For this, it is necessary to work on a special strategy for determining the duties of various institutions and specialists in this field.

"The government of Azerbaijan has great experience in infrastructure and management. Through this experience, Shusha can become a big platform," Rahul Yadav added.

Jahangir Salimxanov noted that it would be good to implement virtual broadcasts in order to spread the cultural heritage of Shusha. He said that it is necessary to create opportunities for professionals in the field to come here and do work in the field of cultural economy.

Emily Smith touched upon a great potential for implementation of various projects in Shusha in the field of cultural economy. She pointed out that in the future, it is possible to hold virtual conferences in Shusha and organize a number of programs with artists.

"You can share live broadcasts and videos from Shusha on the Internet. I am a witness to the great potential of this city. The participation of many institutions in the projects, to be implemented in various fields of the cultural economy, is also an important issue," Emily Smith said.

The economy of culture in sustainable cities and communities

Financial expert Karl Rheinberger delivered a report on the "Economy of culture in sustainable cities and communities".

In the report, the German expert talked about the development of the cultural economy in Shusha, using world experience. He pointed out that the availability of a wide database and high ranking in international rating indicators are important from the point of view of investing in the country.

"This year has been declared the Year of Shusha in Azerbaijan. It is important to use the concept of a smart city in the construction of cities in liberated areas. This has a positive impact on economic development. The perspective of Azerbaijan is very broad," Karl Rheinberger said.

Round-tables dedicated to liberated lands

Round-tables on "Development Impulses from Shusha for Shusha" were organized at the conference.

They discussed the cultural and sustainable economies that create synergy and social impact on the liberated territories, efficiency options for public-private partnerships in the cultural sector and cultural financing, society as a tool for the integrity of liberated territories, and culture as the background of the country's branding strategy abroad and how the circular economy can generate income in creative industries.

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