Azerbaijan is one of the most important energy centers in the Caucasus with its major crude oil and natural gas deposits and many oil and gas pipelines along with the Southern Gas Corridor. This, in particular, at a time when European countries are looking for energy routes other than Russia, gives the country great importance and has a say in new energy dynamics. For this reason, Baku Energy Week, which was held in Azerbaijan, received wide coverage both in the local and international media. Three major events were hosted within the scope of Baku Energy Week held in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, between the 1st of June and the 4th of June 2022: the 27th Caspian Oil and Gas International Exhibition, the 10th Anniversary Caspian International Energy and Renewable Energy Exhibition and the Baku Energy Forum.
In the event, which is stated in the media as the most prestigious oil, gas and energy event in the Caspian region, 250 large companies from 31 countries were hosted in the capital as part of the Energy Week. The countries participating in the event, while making a significant contribution in terms of regional energy dynamics, also give the message that the region drew a peaceful and stable porter open to energy cooperation after the Russia-Ukraine war.
The participation of high-level government officials in the event, which was sponsored and participated by large international companies, was intense. Within the scope of Baku Energy Week, which brought together many high-level government officials and influential companies in the world, bilateral meetings, which can be considered as concrete steps toward achieving international peace, were also held. These meetings also provided international economic and political cooperation, cooperation between companies and the opportunity to get to know each other, and innovations in the energy sector.
27th Baku Energy Forum
One of the most important branches of Baku Energy Week this year, the 27th Baku Energy Forum, was held between 2-3 June. Following the Caspian Oil and Gas conference, Energy Forum continues to host executives and experts from key companies in the energy sector. The Forum aims to support the development of the energy industry in the region by discussing current issues and laying the groundwork for future partnerships. While the conference was on oil and gas in the past, today, the widening of its theme to include all types of energy can be cited as an indication that Azerbaijan is also interested in new forms of energy and is willing to take steps in renewable energy, apart from its abundant resources. In line with that, the plenary session's main topic was "Energy in a transition period - New opportunities and challenges in transforming the world".
This year's special session of the Baku Energy Forum was held with the Agreement on the implementation of the Higher Renewable Energy Program between bp and the Azerbaijan State University of Oil and Industry, with the World Bank initiative. Another notable feature of the event is that the closing ceremony is held in Karabakh, the region which has great importance to Azerbaijan. The session, which took place on the 4th of June, was held in Shusha and different reflections of environmental and energy diplomacy were experienced. The title of the session is “Green Energy Potential and Opportunities in Karabakh Region”. It is seen that Azerbaijan has started to take steps by being aware of the renewable and green energy potential of the Karabakh region. One of the speakers of the event, Elnur Soltanov, Deputy Minister of Energy of Azerbaijan Republic, stated in the past months that Karabakh will turn into a zero-waste zone by 2050.
The 27th Caspian Oil and Gas International Exhibition
The 27th Caspian Oil and Gas International Exhibition, another step of the energy week, is one of the most important events in the field that Azerbaijan has held since its independence. It also pioneered the energy Baku Energy Forum, which focuses on energy resources and energy security in the Caspian region. The event, which was also supported by the previous President of Azerbaijan, Heydar Aliyev, held the opening ceremony with Ilham Aliyev this year. Congratulatory letters were also sent to the event from the leaders of countries such as Turkey, the USA, and Great Britain for the successful completion of the event and its long-standing success.
The national stands of Germany, Russia, and Romania were included in the exhibition. The theme of green and renewable energy, which has become one of the main topics of the international energy sector this year, was touched upon. In this context, renewable energy pilot projects, green energy zone, offshore wind potential, and green hydrogen topics are innovative. In addition, in the exhibition, where many innovative technologies were introduced, oil production and energy transportation, storage of oil and gas systems and services projects were exhibited by companies.
Caspian International Energy and Renewable Energy Exhibition
The third major event of the Energy Week was organized to evaluate the future of renewable energy resources in the Caspian region and what possible technologies would be. This year also celebrated the 10th anniversary of the event. While Azerbaijan focused on diversifying its energy resources, turning Karabakh into a green energy region gained great importance. The event was evaluated as an opportunity to attract investors to the region and establish project partnerships.
Although Azerbaijan has large oil and natural gas deposits, it does not want to be dependent on these resources for energy. It is on track to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels by diversifying its sources and investing in renewable energy. Baku Energy Week provides both the development of the energy sector in the country and the introduction and promotion of innovations in the regional and global energy sector. Delegations coming to the country from many parts of the world also have the opportunity to make new project partnerships through bilateral meetings. In this period when energy is frequently on the world agenda, it is possible to say that it is a success for the energy sector that Azerbaijan has brought energy to a platform where it can be discussed peacefully and openly.