Azerbaijani Politics 14 january — 12:00

Ilham Aliyev refutes Pashinyan's lie: 'Azerbaijan is ahead of Armenia in all basic respects'


'Recently, talking about the 'successes' of his country, Armenia's prime minister compared his country with Azerbaijan. According to him, Armenia is ahead of Azerbaijan in many respects. There is no reason for this assumption, and it does not even require evidence. By all major parameters, Azerbaijan is ahead of Armenia by a wide margin. To confirm this, I would like to voice several cases and figures.' As informs the press-service of the Azerbaijani head of state, President Ilham Aliyev stated this in his closing speech at the meeting on the results of 2019.

Ilham Aliyev recalled that in 2011, Azerbaijan, with the support of 155 countries, was elected a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council. The head of state noted that in 2011, before Azerbaijan, Armenia nominated its candidacy. However, then, realising that they would lose in competition with Azerbaijan, the Armenians withdrew their application.

Ilham Aliyev noted that this story, which happened nine years ago, shows how the respect and weight of Azerbaijan and Armenia differ in the international arena.

In his speech, Ilham Aliyev noted that Azerbaijan is ahead of Armenia in the military sphere. According to the ranking of the world's strongest armies, Azerbaijan is 52nd, Armenia is 96th.

'In terms of air force, we occupy 63rd place, Armenia - 86th, in terms of naval forces we are in 67th place, Armenia has no sea at all. In terms of tank supply, we are at 32nd place, Armenia - at 78th. The source is the Global Firepower 2019 report,' said the head of state.

Then Ilham Aliyev touched on the main macroeconomic indicators. In particular, he noted that in 2019, Azerbaijan's GDP amounted to 47.6 billion dollars, Armenia's - 13 billion dollars. GDP per capita in Azerbaijan is $4,800, in Armenia - $4,500.

'Our foreign exchange reserves amount to $51 billion, Armenia's - $2 billion, i.e. the difference is 25 times. Azerbaijan's foreign trade turnover is $33.6 billion, Armenia's $7.4 billion (4.5 times difference). Our foreign trade surplus is $6 billion, in Armenia it is generally negative and amounts to $2.6 billion. Investments in the economy of Azerbaijan in 2019 amounted to $13.5 billion, Armenia - $0.9 billion,' said the head of state.

Ilham Aliyev emphasised that the external debt of Azerbaijan is 17% of GDP, Armenia is more than 40% of GDP, Azerbaijan's foreign exchange reserves are 6.4 times higher than external debt, and this difference is 2.3 times in Armenia. External debt per capita in Azerbaijan is $799, and in Armenia - $1,900.The head of state also noted that Azerbaijan is ahead of Armenia in terms of salaries and pensions.

'In December 2019, the average salary in Azerbaijan amounted to 723 manats, which is equal to 425 dollars. In Armenia, it is 369 dollars. In terms of purchasing power, Azerbaijan ranks second in the CIS in terms of average salary, and Armenia is ninth. The minimum pension in Azerbaijan is 200 manats, or 118 dollars, in Armenia - 55 dollars. In terms of the purchasing power of the minimum pension, Azerbaijan ranks first in the CIS, and Armenia last, tenth. The average pension in Azerbaijan is 262 manats, or 154 dollars, in Armenia - 84 dollars. In terms of average pension, Azerbaijan ranks fourth in the CIS, while Armenia is eighth. Azerbaijan takes the second place in the purchasing power of the average pension, Armenia - the last, tenth. The poverty level in Azerbaijan is 4.8%, and in Armenia - 24%, the difference is five times,' said Ilham Aliyev.

The head of state also touched upon the latest report on the global competitiveness of the World Economic Forum. From the report it follows that there, in all the main parameters, Azerbaijan is ahead of Armenia.

'Thus, if the Armenian leadership once again decides to compare Azerbaijan and Armenia on the basis of false information, then let it think well. Because, in sports terms, Azerbaijan is in the top league, and Armenia is in the third league, and this difference will only increase,' said the president.

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