Foreign investments enjoy favorable climate in Azerbaijan
Plentiful opportunities, especially in the area of oil and gas, tourism, and agriculture, as well as policies developed to stimulate foreign investment and enhance the investment environment, are provided to investors by Azerbaijan, situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Also, investments have been made by Azerbaijan in order to gain access to additional markets and strengthen its presence in the international economy, and capital has been committed by the country to sectors such as energy, real estate, infrastructure, and tourism.
An impressive rate of growth has been seen by Azerbaijan’s economy over the past decade. The World Bank announces a 1.4% increase of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020, despite the global pandemic. The fortitude of Azerbaijan’s economy, which has endured multiple economic disturbances in the past, has been demonstrated by this. Azerbaijan’s Gross Domestic Product is estimated to reach approximately $54 billion, with an average annual increase of 1.9% over the past four years. A steady low rate of unemployment has been experienced by Azerbaijan over the past decade (5% on the average). This indicates the strength of the labor market and a prosperity of business environment.
Wise investments in fields that demonstrate promising growth and profitability have been cultivated by Azerbaijan. Due to successful efforts of the nation to broaden its economic base, its reliance on petroleum has been decreased. Notable success has been achieved by Azerbaijan in diversifying its economic base and diminishing its dependence on oil exports. A continuous rise of the non-oil exports of Azerbaijan has been noticed in the recent years; the Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Agency (AZPROMO) reports a 47.2% ($2713.40 million) and 12.3% ($3047.67 million) increase in 2021 and 2022 respectively. An increase of 36.6% in non-oil export earnings (approximately $651.42 million) compared to the same period the year before was recorded between January and February of 2023.
Azerbaijan’s natural resources, mainly its oil and gas reserves, attract multinational corporations from around the world. According to the State Oil Company of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOCAR), the volume of 33.5 million tons was reached by Azerbaijan’s oil production in 2020. In 2021 it was 29.5 million tons and 32.8 million tons in 2022. Due to this, the nation can be placed among the major oil-producing countries in the region. 35 million barrels are projected to be reached by oil production in 2023. The Oil and Gas Journal announces that Azerbaijan has more than 2 trillion cubic meters of natural gas reserves, which gives a significant opportunity for energy companies worldwide.
A total of $4.5 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) was attracted by Azerbaijan in 2020: a 5.9% increase in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) compared to the past year was seen by Azerbaijan, which made it one of the most prominent FDI recipients within the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) area. The top three countries by FDI in Azerbaijan in 2020 were the United Kingdom, Turkey and the United States. As the Central Bank of Azerbaijan reports, $1.7 billion were contributed by the United Kingdom, $577 million were invested by Turkey and $475 million by the United States.
According to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Index, Azerbaijan has made substantial strides in reaching the objectives that were put in place by the United Nations across multiple domains. The SDG Index shows a decrease of the rate of global poverty from 49.6% in 2010 to 5.9% by 2022. A positive trend has also been demonstrated by Azerbaijan’s Global Hunger Index (GHI), decreasing from 14.5 in 2010 to 9.7 in 2019 and further to 7.5 in 2022. The benefits of its efforts to bolster health and well-being have been received by the citizens of the country, which was made evident by the increase in life expectancy from 68.6 years in 2010 to 73.3 years in 2022. Azerbaijan’s commitment to improving the standard of living for its people and promoting economic growth in a sustainable manner and its commitment to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals are interconnected.
A ranking of 25th place in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business report was achieved by Azerbaijan in 2019. A notable enhancement of 32 places from the previous year is demonstrated by this fact and a favorable business climate for foreign investors is highlighted. Azerbaijan was ranked 34th among 190 countries by the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report in 2020, with a score of 76.7 for the ease of setting up a business.
All factors taken into consideration show that Azerbaijan is a highly attractive investment opportunity for a variety of industries, including energy, tourism, agriculture, and technology. A variety of incentives to simplify the foreign investment process has been put in place by the government in order to stimulate foreign investment. Attractive business environment, strategic location, and robust economic growth make Azerbaijan an attractive option for investors to expand their investment portfolios and explore new markets. Azerbaijan’s foreign investments influenced the nation’s economic growth significantly. Leveraged investments can be used by the country to expand its portfolio and reduce its reliance on oil and gas industries, as well as to access novel markets.