Azerbaijan’s president calls for privatization of state oil company SOCAR: A hope for petrostates?

FORBES | Like other commodity export dependent nations around the world, Azerbaijan has seen its economy suffer from the lockdown effects of the global coronavirus pandemic, particularly its oil and gas sector. The World Bank now forecasts the country’s economy to contract by 2.6% this year - a figure revised from the original estimate of 2.3% predicted growth. Despite the fact that Azerbaijan is expected to rebound slightly in 2021 with 2.2% growth in GDP, this may be the time for the government to act swiftly in restructuring the economy.

Azerbaijan derives 40% of its total gross domestic product from oil and gas, which accounts for two-thirds of the government’s budget revenues and over 80% of export revenues. Earlier this month the government was forced to redraft its budget to reflect oil prices of $35 per barrel, down from $55.

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