Azerbaijan in the Spotlight as World Economic Forum Comes to Baku

Apr 03, 2013, 04:13 ET from Azerbaijan Monitor

BAKU, Azerbaijan, April 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

More than 200 global and regional leaders from business, government and civil society are scheduled to attend the World Economic Forum in Azerbaijan this weekend, which places the economic success of the host nation firmly in the spotlight.

The event in Baku is billed as a Strategic Dialogue on the Future of the South Caucasus and Central Asia and will examine investment and development in a region that the International Monetary Fund says will grow five to seven percent in 2013, while much of Europe is facing recession.

The Strategic Dialogue event was agreed in January in Davos at a meeting between Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum Klaus Schwab, during which they recognised the need for a localised event to "identify opportunities associated with the future of the region."

The Forum will mainly discuss issues related to such matters as industry, natural resources, transport, infrastructure, agriculture, finance and telecommunications. However, Azerbaijan's own economy and economic development will also take centre stage.

"More than merely welcoming delegates, Azerbaijan also welcomes the chance to tell the story of what we have achieved since independence - complete with all the pitfalls, challenges and successes," an Azerbaijani government spokesman said.

"Azerbaijan's economy has grown at double-digit rates over the past decade and the region as a whole presents significant untapped potential given its natural resources and strategic location at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and the Middle East," he added.

The event will be held at the JW Marriott Hotel Absheron in Baku. Topics to be covered over the two days include Entrepreneurship and Human Capital, Visions for the South Caucasus and Central Asia and Finance and Long Term Investing.

Azerbaijan will be showcased in a special session entitled Vision for Azerbaijan: Towards a New Economy.

SOURCE Azerbaijan Monitor