Azerbaijan has joined Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) since 2003. When established the EITI aimed at ensuring transparency of the revenues from extractive industries. During this period Azerbaijan published reports on revenues gained from extractive industries, achieved full transparency on revenues, disclosed all information to citizens in accordance with the goal of EITI. The EITI Multi-stakeholder group including also NGO Coalition leads the EITI process in the country.
Unfortunately, Initiative started to create an impression of organization ensuring protection of human rights or to be more precise NGO rights thus forgeting it’s initial goal. In the recent years statements on the EITI by various international organizations, articles published by recognized media institutions have reflected merely the position of NGOs, transparency issues have been excluded and the major mandate of the Initiative has been forgotten.
The major goal of Azerbaijani government have been to ensure full transparency of revenues from extractive industries for the citizens when it joined the Initiative in 2003. However, today Azerbaijan is criticised by the organizations with double standards. It is unacceptable that EITI is becoming such kind of organization. Azerbaijan has not joined this Initiative to be accountable before any organization outside the country and listen any critics not related to the mandate of EITI. Azerbaijan is not going to tolerate pressures with regards to this matter. Given all this, the government of Azerbaijan will consider whether to leave the EITI. Moreover, the government will deliver its concerns to other EITI countries.
Despite all of the above mentioned, Azerbaijan as always will continue its activities on ensuring transparency of revenues from extractive sectors for its citizens either inside or outside the EITI.