BAKU: Aliyev: Successful, dynamic development of Azerbaijan ensured

President Ilham Aliyev: Successful, dynamic development of Azerbaijan
ensured in 2012

[image: President Ilham Aliyev: Successful, dynamic development of
Azerbaijan ensured in 2012]
1 January 2013, 00:28 (GMT+04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 1 / Trend /

President Ilham Aliyev congratulated the people of Azerbaijan on the
occasion of the World Azerbaijanis Solidarity Day and the New Year. The
congratulatory message reads:

Dear ladies and gentlemen!
Dear compatriots!

2013 year is beginning in a few minutes. 2012 has been a very successful
year for our country. Successful, dynamic development of our country has
been ensured in 2012. All tasks facing the country have been fulfilled.

Azerbaijan`s economy successfully developed in 2012 and development
manifests itself again in the economy. What makes us delighted the most is
that the non-oil economy grew by 10 per cent, and it shows that our
reforms-related policy is very successful and very effective.
Our economy is diversified. I am sure that additional opportunities will be
created in future years for sustainable economic development of our
country. All economic indicators are high. The poverty level dropped to 6
per cent. Jobless rate is 5.2 per cent. This year saw over 100 thousand
jobs opened with a total of 1.1 million jobs created during the past nine
years. New jobs directly helped reduce unemployment.

International rating agencies upgraded our country`s credit ratings in
2012. It is a very good and momentous event for the year of crisis.
Azerbaijan`s economy is the 46th for the competitiveness index in the
world. I am confident that our positions will be higher in the years to

Economic reforms, deliberate policy enable us to achieve great
accomplishments in the social sector too. 2012 saw the rise in salaries,
pensions. Targeted social assistance covers tens of thousands families.
Returning of soviet savings began in 2012. I am sure that this process will
end next year. Azerbaijan`s policy in this direction is worth accolades in
the CIS area because we will manage to pay back these deposits within short
time and with highest coefficient. All these issues show that the
deliberate policy is generating concrete results in both economic and
social spheres.

Much work has been done to solve problems of internally displaced persons
in 2012 with 20 thousand IDPs provided with new flats and houses. Housing
conditions of over 20 thousand IDPs will be improved next year, and thus,
we will provide perfect conditions for our compatriots as a result of
implementation of the state program. Of course, after liberation of our
lands from occupation, we will build new buildings, districts and towns in
the occupied lands and provide good conditions for our citizens. I am sure
that Azerbaijan will recover its territorial integrity.

Our economic and military power is building up. Our international positions
are being strengthened.

Very serious political events took place to solve the Nagorno-Karabakh
conflict in 2012. First of all, I want to highlight the heads of Minsk
Group co-chair states` statement, which underlined that the status quo is
unacceptable. It shows that no one including mediators dealing with this
issue, countries assuming functions refuse to put up with the occupation.
Changing status quo means the end of occupation.

The summit of the Non-Aligned Movement that Azerbaijan acceded to adopted a
very comprehensive and fair resolution in 2012, which says the conflict
must be solved on the basis of territorial integrity of Azerbaijan only.

At the same time, the resolution adopted at the NATO summit in 2012
highlighted the issue of resolution of the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict on
the basis of territorial integrity. The countries, which are the members of
the Non-Aligned Movement and NATO, constitute the vast majority of the
world community and the stance of these countries is unambiguous:
territorial integrity of Azerbaijan must be restored. There is no other
solution to the conflict.

I want to reiterate that Azerbaijan will never allow creation of another
so-called Armenian state in its native lands. The present Armenia was
established on the historical Azerbaijani territories. We know this history
very well. Irevan khanate, Zangazur, Goycha mahals are our historical
lands. The creation of the second Armenian state in the Azerbaijani lands
will never happen. Azerbaijan will never allow this. Nagorno-Karabakh will
never get independence.
Azerbaijan will restore its territorial integrity and Azerbaijani flag will
be raised in all currently occupied towns, including Shusha, Khankendi.

I think mediators must give more concrete proposals to solve the conflict
in 2013 and aggressor must be forced to leave occupied lands as soon as

It is not a secret to anybody that we are seriously working on the military
build-up. The Azerbaijani army is the strongest force in the South
Caucasus. All necessary measures are being put in place to beef up the
army. Large amounts of military equipment, ammunition, aircrafts,
helicopters, artillery, air-defense systems were acquired and, at the same
time, production of over 40 military products was organized domestically.

We will strengthen our army even more in 2013. Our military spending is 50
percent more than the overall Armenia`s budget. This purposeful and
comprehensive policy will be continued from now on so that the
Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh could be solved and
Azerbaijan`s territorial integrity could be recovered.

As to the energy security issues, a landmark event took place in 2012 –
TANAP project was signed. The TANAP project will allow us to ship huge
amounts of gas to world markets. The TANAP project, in my judgment, is the
greatest step among energy security-related issues in recent years in not
only our country but also the region, the European continent. Azerbaijan
was an initiator of the TANAP project. I am sure that Azerbaijan will
execute the TANAP project with its partners in a timely manner and, thus,
the European energy map will dramatically change.

At the same time, the other important Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway project was
successfully implemented in 2012. I am sure that we will celebrate the
opening of the railway next year.
Great work has been done in the humanitarian sphere in 2012. Baku has grown
into the somewhat of a global center for organizing and expanding the
intercivilizational dialogue.
The successfully held the second International Humanitarian Forum, its
results, successes achieved in this area, presents our country to the
world, and at the same time, I am sure that our experience is studied in
other countries, because all peoples, all representatives of religions in
Azerbaijan live and will live as a family in a friendly atmosphere.
National and religious tolerance is the great wealth of Azerbaijan.

Great accomplishments were achieved in sports in 2012. Azerbaijan gained a
historical victory in the London Summer Olympic Games. We won ten medals
including two gold, two silver and six bronze medals. We have gained ten
medals for the first time in the history. Thus, Azerbaijan ranked 30th on a
world scale, 15th in Europe and 3rd in the Muslim world in the Olympic
medal count.

A good news reached us in the end of the year. The European Olympic
Committee`s General Assembly made a historic decision in December to hold
the first 2015 European Olympic Games in Baku. It is our great victory too.
These games will remain as the first games in the history. It is the great
honor and great responsibility for us to host the first European Olympic
Games in Azerbaijan, Baku, and, at the same time, it is the European
Olympic family`s high assessment to the work done in Azerbaijan. Given we
skillfully hosted this year the Europe`s and the world`s first song contest
– Eurovision contest – I am sure that European Olympic Games will be
perfectly conducted too. In all spheres I mentioned, 2012 remains as the
successful year in history and these accomplishments achieved allows us to
look into 2013 with great optimism. I am sure that all tasks facing our
country next year will be successfully implemented.

Today, we also celebrate the World Azerbaijanis Solidarity Day. Availing
myself of the opportunity, I cordially salute and congratulate all world
Azerbaijanis. I want to let them know that they can be proud that the
independent state Azerbaijan exists in the world. This is the Azerbaijani
state that is today a member of the world`s number one international
organization – the UN Security Council. This is the state that managed to
continue its economic expansion even in crisis years, lay the solid
economic foundation based on internal resources, and looks into the future
with great hopes and optimism.

I once more wholeheartedly congratulate all world Azerbaijanis on this
wonderful holidays, both the World Azerbaijanis Solidarity Day and the New
Year, and wish every Azerbaijani family good health, happiness.

Happy Holiday!