The 5th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) was held on July 28 in a video conference format.
The long-term trends and short-term macroeconomic changes in the development of the Asian region, the measures taken by AIIB in the fight against COVID-19 and other issues were discussed at a meeting dedicated to "AIIB approach to support the members in the medium and long term prospects until 2030”.
While delivering a speech, the guest of honor of the annual meeting, President of the People's Republic of China Xi Jinping stressed that AIIB, uniting 102 participating countries on 6 continents, has become an renowned international financial institution. Jinping expressed satisfaction with AIIB’s successful activity, the support rendered by the bank to the member-states during the coronavirus pandemic and made recommendations in connection with the upcoming activity of the bank.
While speaking at the event, AIIB Governor from Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani Minister of Economy Mikayil Jabbarov stressed that Azerbaijan attaches great importance to the development of cooperation with AIIB and informed the participants about jointly implemented projects and the development of corporate policy during the next 10 years. It was noted that TANAP project, supporting regional trade and energy security of Europe is one of the successful examples of cooperation with AIIB. Stressing that Azerbaijan has an advantageous geographical position, the minister of economy pointed out that having created a modern infrastructure, Azerbaijan turned into an international transport hub and mentioned and the role of the shortest transport route between Asia and Europe - the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway and the new Baku port in expanding cooperation between regional countries.
It was emphasized that despite all the efforts of Azerbaijan for regional development, the aggressive policy of Armenia creates serious obstacles to expanding economic cooperation in the region and limits the full realization of economic potential of the country. Mikayil Jabbarov informed the participants that over the past three decades, 20 percent of the internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan is under the occupation of Armenia, over a million of people have become refugees and internally displaced persons. The Azerbaijani positions, which were not on the front line zone, but on the border between the two countries, have been subjected the to the artillery fire by the Armenian armed forces since July 12, as a result of which military men and civilians were killed and injured, the provocation of Armenia purposefully increases the tension around the conflict, the occupation policy of the neighboring country puts energy and transport megaprojects in the region at serious risk.
While speaking about the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Jabbarov informed about the measures taken to eliminate its impact, stressed out that a favorable business environment has been created in Azerbaijan and innovative reforms aimed at developing the private sector are being carried out. It was noted that the implementation of the establishment of a branch of the Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution of the World Economic Forum in Azerbaijan, designed to play the role of an important platform for the global multilateral cooperation, has been launched.
The minister of economy spoke about Azerbaijan’s post-pandemic trends and emphasized that the digital economy, ICT, agribusiness, construction, mining, petrochemical and tourism are the priority sectors for economy and mentioned the existing opportunities for cooperation in these areas.
AIIB President Jin Liqun informed about the bank's activity, the measures taken to stimulate the economic growth and infrastructure development in the Asian region.
The AIIB report for 2019 was presented at the event. The participants exchanged opinions on the admission of new members and the next annual meeting, which is planned to be held next year.