Ganja bypass road project in Azerbaijan. The Asian Development Bank’s main interventions in Azerbaijan’s transport sector will include developing the east-west and north-south corridors to boost connectivity to neighboring countries. Photo by: ADB / CC BY-NC-ND
Recent progress in Azerbaijan has been impressive. By exploiting its abundant hydrocarbon resources, the country managed to raise gross national income from $660 in 2001 to $7,350 in 2013. Over the same period, poverty incidence dropped from 49 percent to just 5 percent.
Although investments in its oil sector have paid dividends, allowing Azerbaijan to reach upper-middle income status, the government recognizes the need to move away from oil dependency and diversify its economy. In this light, the government has set its focus on creating a viable trade environment to encourage local enterprises and foreign investors to do business in the country.
The government is guided by its strategy document, “Azerbaijan 2020: Look into the Future.” Its main thrust is to transform the country’s market-based economy into one that is knowledge-based by developing human capital. Accordingly, the Asian Development Bank has aligned its 2014-2018 country partnership strategy with the government’s objectives.