"Ilham Aliyev: Our aim is to convert black gold to human gold"

The Pakistan-based "Daily Times" newspaper has published an article entitled "Ilham Aliyev: Our aim is to convert black gold to human gold".
The article saysL: "President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev is a young, dynamic, highly educated person with pragmatic approach to tackling issues and knowledgeable about the modern world, politics and economics, who has brought about a transformation in Azerbaijan over the last 9 years.
Aliyev is a graduate of Moscow State University (MSU) where he received a PhD degree in history. Prior to his presidency, Aliyev worked as a university professor, and had lectured at MSU international relations department. Aliyev`s linguistic abilities, fluency in Russian, Turkish, English and French apart from his native Azerbaijani language helped him a lot in communication with world leaders and in developing personal ties with them.
He started his political career in 1995, being elected a member of the National Assembly and was promoted later to the head of the Azerbaijani delegation to the Council of Europe.
On October 15, 2003, Ilham Aliyev won presidential elections with almost 77 percent majority and was reelected in 2008 with 87 percent of the polls.
Today, Azerbaijan is rising under the leadership of Aliyev. The nation is witnessing rapid and dynamic development that is comparable with developed countries. A country with nine and a half million population has become a leading power in Transcaucasia with the fastest growing economy in the world."
The article goes on to say "In 1995 Azerbaijan signed a "Contract of Century" for exploration of hydrocarbon offshore reserves in the Caspian Sea. Aliyev, as vice president of State Oil Company was a key figure during the negotiations between the Azerbaijani Government and Western oil companies. This contract has not only opened a door for the new investments into the economy of Azerbaijan and paved the way to the renaissance of the nation, but also cemented sovereignty of the country. There were many other oil and gas deals afterwards, but that very contract instilled confidence to the foreign investors who had hesitated to have a business deal with the newly independent state.
The natural resources are being transported through diversified network. In mid of 2006, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan main export pipeline was inaugurated. Construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum gas pipeline was completed soon afterwards. These pipelines deliver Azerbaijan`s own oil and gas to the world markets as well as allow carrying hydrocarbon resources of the neighbouring countries through Azerbaijan, bringing the country transit revenues. Implementation of these energy projects emphasizes the role of Azerbaijan as a reliable energy source and transportation route.
The Baku-Tbilisi-Gars railway corridor, which intends to link Azerbaijan and Turkey via Georgia, is under construction and will facilitate transportation of goods and passengers from Central Asia and Azerbaijan onwards to Europe. This project will ultimately make country a transport hub of the region. All these projects are not only giving substantial economic dividends to Azerbaijan but also increasing political weight of the country."
The author says "According to the results of a survey ordered by the Caspian Information Company (CIC) and conducted by the British Populis Limited, 95 percent of the Azerbaijan population trusts the President Ilham Aliyev. Moreover, 96 percent of the respondents expressed their satisfaction with the President`s activities. The head of CIC, Gerald Frost, noted that similar surveys conducted in Western countries have never revealed such level of trust.
Aliyev takes keen interest in promoting the bilateral relations between Pakistan and Azerbaijan. Today the two nations enjoy close and cordial relations characterized by shared perception on major global and regional issues. A unique feature of these relations is the strong support extended to each other on the key issues of Nagorno-Karabakh and the Jammu and Kashmir. Both countries closely cooperate in international fora including UN, OIC, ECO. The two countries signed a number of agreements to provide a framework for bilateral cooperation in all spheres including economy, trade, finance, information, culture and military fields.
First Lady of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyev is very helpful to the president in his mission. Highly educated and cultured woman, she is a member of Parliament, Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO and ISESCO. M Aliyeva is the head of charitable "Heydar Aliyev" foundation with a mission to enhance the social, economic and cultural development in Azerbaijan and to ensure the implementation of the large-scale projects and programs in line with National Leader Heydar Aliyev`s ideas for progress in the country. The Foundation addresses the problems of children, supports comprehensive upbringing and education of younger generation as well as provides moral and financial support to elderly. The Foundation has constructed the Thalassemia centre, which provides patients with free treatment facilities as well as distributes free insulin pens to the children suffering of diabetes. M Aliyeva gained popularity in Pakistan soon after the construction of a modern girls school in Muzaffarabad in place of the old one, destroyed by devastating earthquake. Azerbaijan has always been amongst the firsts to help Pakistan in the days of need. The Azerbaijani rescue and medical teams were in Balakot after the natural calamity in 2005, and, again, this country was in the first line to render its humanitarian and financial aid during the floods of 2010 and 2011."



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