Speaker of Azerbaijani Parliament Sahiba Gafarova met with the delegation headed by President of the National Assembly of Bulgaria Rosen Dimitrov Zhelyazkov, according to the Press and Public Relations Department of Azerbaijani Parliament.

Gafarova expressed confidence that the visit would contribute to further strengthening and expansion of bilateral ties between the countries, including between the parliaments.

The speaker stated that Azerbaijan and Bulgaria are friendly and strategic partner countries. The Joint Declaration on Strategic Partnership signed in 2015 brought the relations to a qualitatively new stage.

The Speaker of the Parliament emphasized the importance of mutual visits and high-level meetings.

At the meeting it was emphasized that cooperation in the energy sector plays a key role in the development of interstate relations; the importance of cooperation in the economic, scientific educational, cultural, and humanitarian spheres was also noted. It was stated that consistent high-level political contacts lay the foundation for the development of ties in other spheres as well.

Recalling her visit to Bulgaria last year, Gafarova emphasized the positive role of legislative bodies in the development of relations between the countries, stressing that mutual visits and meetings give grounds to talk about the existence of good cooperation ties between the parliaments today. The importance of maintaining this cooperation between the relevant committees of the parliaments was emphasized.

Highlighting the importance of further development of cooperation between the parliaments of the two countries within the framework of international parliamentary organizations, Gafarova noted that several structures show double standards towards Azerbaijan and underlined that the decision of PACE on Azerbaijani delegation is none other than a manifestation of double standards.

During the meeting, the guest was informed about the current situation in the region.

Rosen Zhelyazkov conveyed congratulations on the successful completion of the extraordinary presidential election held in Azerbaijan and the convincing victory of President of Azerbaijan Republic Ilham Aliyev. Noting that the Bulgarian parliamentary delegation also observed the election, the President of National Assembly emphasized the high voter turnout, emphasized that the election was free and transparent and that by voting for Ilham Aliyev, the Azerbaijani people chose stability and sustainable development.

Remarking that his country is interested in cooperation with Azerbaijan in all spheres, Rosen Zhelyazkov touched upon the successful cooperation in the energy sector and noted that this cooperation has turned his country from an energy consumer to a transit country. He noted that Bulgaria intends to join the project of an electric cable that will be built on the bottom of the Black Sea as part of the green energy project. It was also stated that Bulgaria is interested in developing cooperation on the Ring of Solidarity project.

He highly appreciated Azerbaijan’s role in establishing sustainable peace in the region, as well as works on delimitation and demarcation of borders, and restoration of transportation infrastructure in the region. According to him, in the future, Bulgarian companies can participate in the reconstruction and rehabilitation works being carried out in Karabakh.

Stating that Azerbaijan as the leading country of the South Caucasus is Bulgaria’s main partner in energy issues, Rosen Zhelyazkov congratulated our country on being chosen as the venue of COP29 and called it an assessment of Azerbaijan’s attention and care in the environmental sphere. He said Bulgaria is ready to provide comprehensive support to Azerbaijan in holding such a prestigious event as COP29.

Referring to the return of the Azerbaijani parliamentary delegation to PACE, the President of the National Assembly noted that Bulgaria supports the re-ratification of the powers of the Azerbaijani delegation to PACE.

The sides exchanged views on the prospects of the development of interstate and inter-parliamentary cooperation, as well as other issues of mutual interest.