On July 18, 2014, Mr. Ashraf Shikhaliyev, Director of Azerbaijan International Development Agency (AIDA), visited the Headquarters of the International Fund for Cooperation and Partnership of the Black Sea and Caspian Sea (BSCSIF) in Bucharest.
The BSCSIF Executive Director, Ms. Alev Balgi, Project Coordinator, Ms. Julia Akhunova, Coordinator of the reasearch department, Ms Valentina Albu and Project Manager, Luiza Nita made a presentation of the main objectives and activities of the BSCSIF, which was created as a platform for dialogue and cooperation between the countries from the Black Sea and Caspian Sea regions, the implemented and ongoing projects, as well as of the future perspectives of the Fund. They highlighted the role of the organization in fostering the bilateral and multilateral relations between the countries in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea regions, as well as in promoting the economic opportunities and the human and cultural values of the region worldwide.
Mr. Ashraf Shikhaliyev presented the activities of AIDA, stressing the social and humanitarian dimension of the projects implemented by the organization worldwide. AIDA was established in 2011 under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan and it is responsible for provision of international humanitarian and development assistance by the Republic of Azerbaijan to the countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America, while coordinates the activities of relevant state agencies in this field. Also, within a joint programme carried out with think tanks in Azerbaijan, AIDA provides opportunities for foreign researchers to conduct studies and to specialize in Azerbaijan and the Caspian Sea region.
Mr. Shikhaliyev thanked for the warm hospitality and appreciated the significant role of the BSCSIF in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea regions, as a bridge organization contributing to the enhancement of the cultural, economic, and social cooperation, as well as to the strengthening of the diplomatic relations between the countries. Project proposals to be further implemented by AIDA together with the BSCSIF in the fields of energy security, promoting multiculturalism and education were discussed during the meeting.