Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Cuba to the Republic of Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Georgia Alfredo Nieves Portuondo has received the Caspian Energy delegation chaired by Natalia Aliyeva, President and Editor-in-Chief of Caspian Energy International Media Group.
During the meeting the sides discussed prospects of expanding the Azerbaijani-Cuban cooperation in the framework of the Caspian European Club (Caspian Business Club), Caspian American Club and Caspian Energy International Media Group.
According to the Ambassador, the Azerbaijan-Cuba political relations are at the very high level, and diplomatic efforts will focus on boosting the trade and economic cooperation. “We have been invited to take part in the tourism exhibition in Baku. If we can confirm our presence and participation in this exhibition, it will be the first ever in the Cuban history participation in a tourism exhibition in Azerbaijan”, AmbassadorAlfredo Nieves Portuondo said, noting that “tourism is one of the leading industries in Cuba - 4 million tourists visited Cuba in 2016”. Alfredo Nieves Portuondo highlighted the great potential for the development of tourist exchange between Azerbaijan and Cuba.
He said Cuba is interested in Azerbaijani investments. At the same time, Azerbaijan has always been famous for its agricultural development, and the two countries could cooperate in this area, the Ambassador continued. “If we could create a joint Azerbaijani-Cuban company in the field of agricultural production, it would notably promote the development of the bilateral relations”, Alfredo Nieves Portuondo said.
“The healthcare system is a prioritised sector in Azerbaijan, like in Cuba. In this regard, we can also talk about cooperation in the field of medicine, healthcare services and pharmaceutical industry. It is also possible to conduct exchange in the field of pharmaceuticals and biotechnology, Cuba already has such experience with other countries”, the Ambassador continued.
He also touched upon the cooperation in the oil and gas industry: “Cuba produces about 4 million tonnes of heavy oil per year, mainly in the north of Havana. In the Gulf of Mexico there is a triangle which belongs to Cuba. According to the forecasts, large oil reserves are concentrated there. Currently we are conducting extensive exploration surveys there jointly with the companies from Norway, Russia, Vietnam, France and Brazil, who use the technology for producing oil from deep horizons. The surveys show the presence of oil there. Azerbaijan has the richest experience in this area, with more than a hundred years of stable oil and gas production. A lot of students from Cuba are getting education in Baku. We could cooperate in these areas”.
He invited Azerbaijani companies to exhibitions in Havana dedicated to foreign trade and tourism. The Ambassador highlighted his intention to take part in business forums to be hosted by the Caspian European Club (Caspian Business Club) and Caspian American Club in February.
At the end of the meeting the Ambassador gave his exclusive interview to Caspian Energy. During the interview he touched on the possibility of developing the bilateral relations and boosting the economic cooperation, and also spoke about the development of the tourism sector and energy cooperation.