Joint Declaration of Presidents of Azerbaijan and Georgia

Joint Declaration of Presidents of Azerbaijan and Georgia

Joint Declaration of Presidents of Azerbaijan and Georgia

The President of Georgia and the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan,

Recognizing the excellent state of multifaceted relations between Georgia and Azerbaijan, based on friendship, sovereign equality, mutual trust and convergence of their interests in various fields,
Mindful of the historical links and tradition of fruitful cooperation that underlie their current bilateral relations and strategic partnership,

Noting the importance of the Treaty on strengthening of friendship, cooperation and mutual security between Georgia and the Republic of Azerbaijan of March 8, 1996, 

Guided by the purpose and principles of the Charter of the United Nations,

Underlining their commitment to the common ideas of peace, democracy, human rights and fundamental freedoms, promotion of the rule of law, civil society, and good governance in accordance with the principles of the United Nations, the OSCE and the Council of Europe,

Stressing the importance of jointly contributing to the international peace and security,

Proceeding from a desire to consolidate their long-term cooperation and impart a qualitatively new charters to their relations expanding them to new fields for the mutual benefit,

Declare as follows:

1. The two countries hereby proclaim that they continue to strengthen the present level of strategic partnership aimed at elevating their relations by deepening and broadening cooperation in fields of mutual interest, both in the bilateral and international fora.

2. Such a strategic partnership would include enhanced cooperation to achieve objectives in the following fields:

(a) Political

- Continue of a strategic dialogue to discuss bilateral relations, regional and global issues of mutual interest with participation of the relevant representatives of the two countries;

- Encourage further development of cooperation and regular exchanges between the Georgian and Azerbaijani Parliaments, including in the multilateral formats, with the support of their relevant friendship groups;

- Enhance cooperation in the UN, including its specialized agencies and institutions, the OSCE, the CoE and GUAM, as well as in matters related to the EU, NATO and at other international and regional fora;

- Promote joint initiatives on major regional and international issues of common interest, including in Azerbaijan-Georgia-Turkey trilateral format;

- Promote close ties between foreign policy expert groups and research organizations to step up exchanges and to facilitate their cooperation;

- Intensify their efforts aimed at peaceful settlement of conflicts and strengthening of international peace and security;

- Reiterate the utmost importance of the earliest peaceful settlement of the conflict in and around Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the conflict in Georgian regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia on the basis of principles and norms of international law, particularly, sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of the internationally recognized borders of states, as well as in accordance with relevant Resolutions and decisions of the UN, OSCE and CoE;

- Underline the necessity of safe and dignified return  of the internally displaced persons and refugees to their places of origin;

- Confirm importance of the delimitation and demarcation of the state border between Georgia and the Republic of Azerbaijan and the necessity of acceleration of completion of the delimitation process;

- Emphasize importance of joint efforts towards ensuring stable, constant and secure efficient operations of oil and gas and railway infrastructure;

(b) Economy and Trade

- Further deepen cooperation between officials of the two countries in areas of common interest on bilateral and multilateral economic and trade matters, inter alia, through the enhanced work of the Joint Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation;

- Continue strengthening cooperation in the priority fields of industry, energy, transport, infrastructure, agriculture, information technology, communications, tourism and environment;

- Continue providing conducive environment for increasing mutual investments and ensure their protection;

- Generate high-level dialogue between the relevant authorities of the two countries on energy issues, with the participation of business circles where necessary, and expanding their bilateral relations by means of institutional energy cooperation, exchange of experiences, supporting cooperation between their companies;

- Continue joint efforts aimed at development of the South Gas Corridor including cooperation within the framework of the existing South Caucasus Pipeline project and further promotion of gas transportation through their territories, thus strengthening energy security of European Union and other stakeholders and positioning the Republic of Azerbaijan and Georgia as substantial contributors and enablers of the South Gas Corridor;

- Gasification of regions of Georgia, reaching maximum rate of gasified households in Georgia by 2018. Continue the efforts to secure reliable gas supply to social and commercial customers of Georgia;

- Continue joint efforts for increasing utilization of the transmission capacities of HV Interconnection Lines (330 kV and 500 kV) between the two countries, including support to the organization of the South Caucasus electricity transit corridor from Azerbaijan via Georgian energy system to Turkey;

- Continue joint efforts towards development and expansion of the Great Silk Road in the framework of East-West corridor, and in this context reaffirm their assurance of launching the Baku –Tbilisi -Kars railway project in 2016;

- Encourage contacts and twining projects between cities and regions in both countries with a view to promote trade, economic cooperation and tourism;

- Promote cooperation between Georgian and Azerbaijani small and medium-size enterprises and the possibilities of establishing joint ventures in third countries;

- Promote tourist flow and cooperation between relevant organizations of both countries, including their participation in each other’s tourism exhibitions and fairs;

- Enhance cooperation within international economic and financial institutions and fora;

(c) Defence and Security

- Enhance defense and military-technical cooperation on a bilateral level and within the framework of the Partnership for Peace Programme;

- Establish regular consultations at senior civil and military level on political-military issues;

- Reinforce cooperation to combat terrorism, violent extremism, separatism, transnational organized crime, illicit production, traffic and smuggling of narcotic drugs, illicit trade in arms, human trafficking, crimes against cultural and historical heritage, money laundering and other transnational security threats, on the basis of the relevant international instruments;

(d)  Science, Education and Culture

- Promote existing and new forms of cooperation in the fields of science, education and culture;

- Enhance high-level and innovation-focused cooperation and exchanges between educational, scientific and research institutions, inter alia, through student and doctoral grants and programmes;

- Promote inter-cultural and inter-civilization dialogue through joint initiatives, including establishment and restoration of the cultural centers;

- Promote cultural cooperation and wider exposure to cultural heritage and achievements of the two countries through exhibitions, cultural and artistic performances;

- Strengthen contacts in the fields of health, social care, youth and sports and mass media;

- Promote cooperation and initiatives to strengthen links between cities and regions of the two countries;

- Encourage activities aimed at fostering promotion and protection of human rights.

3. The substance, scope and details of cooperation in each particular field will be agreed by the relevant authorities of the two countries. The implementation of the Declaration will be coordinated by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs.

4. The strategic partnership between the two countries is not directed against any other State or group of States, and does not infringe upon their rights or commitments under bilateral or multilateral international agreements in force to which they are Parties.

(Source: text provided by the Georgian president’s office)