Czech Republic ready to discuss mutual investments with Azerbaijan, says minister

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Feb.1

By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:

Czech Republic ready to discuss mutual investments with Azerbaijan, Foreign Minister of Czech Republic Tomas Petricek said in an interview with Trend.

"In line with relevant legislation, the Czech Republic provides various incentives such as tax relief for up to 10 years to foreign investors, especially those who create jobs in regions with a higher level of unemployment – i.e., not in Prague where the level of unemployment is currently below 2 percent. According to the recent amendments to the Investment Incentives Act, projects focused on regions other than Prague will receive preferential treatment. This applies particularly to technology centres which can obtain grants for creating jobs, training and retraining new employees. Prospective foreign investors in the Czech Republic are advised and supported by the CzechInvest agency, established by the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Investment in both directions is obviously a topic we are ready to discuss at the Joint Commission in 2020 [on Economic, Technical-Scientific and Cultural Cooperation]," he said.

As for the prospects for creating joint ventures between the two countries in various spheres, Petricek said Czech Republi sees such potential in a variety of economic sectors, including energy, automotive industry, transport infrastructure and agriculture.

"As for the latter sector, one which has great potential in Azerbaijan with its fertile land, our Embassy in Baku brought a trade mission led by the Czech Deputy Minister of Agriculture Pavel Veselý to Azerbaijan in April 2019, allowing for the establishment of contacts between companies from both countries," said the foreign minister.

Petricek pointed out that while the CzechTrade agency established by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, with its office in Baku, does a great job in establishing links between Czech and Azerbaijani private businesses, doing business with enterprises owned, or co-owned to a significant degree, by the Azerbaijani state is a matter of interest for the Czech-Azerbaijani Joint Commission on Economic, Technical-Scientific and Cultural Cooperation.

"Both of its previous co-chairs moved to other positions within the Czech and Azerbaijani state service late in 2019, and we hope new ones will be appointed by both sides very soon so this important Commission can soon meet in Prague for another round of a strategic debate on the future of our relations. Based on our positive experience, we will continue to seek participation in projects aimed at modernisation of the Azerbaijani economy," he said.

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