The ITEI NGO Coalition expresses regret regarding the declaration by the head of EITI Commission in Azerbaijan on withdrawal from this global initiative, after decision to suspend the country in EITI, and declares the following:

  1. The declaration made on behalf of the government of Azerbaijan regarding withdrawal from EITI should be considered hasty and emotional, while implementation of the new EITI standard leads to more transparency and accountability, and introduces new important directions (disclosure of beneficial ownership, project-level reporting, commodity trading, contract disclosure, etc).
  2. The declaration made on behalf of the government of Azerbaijan was not adequate to decision of the 36th meeting of the International EITI Board on suspending Azerbaijan’s status in EITI without additional requirements, and it comes more from unwillingness of the government to implement proposed corrective and take responsibility.
  3. The declaration of the State Commission on EITI should have been disclosed, at least, after consultation with other stakeholders. Neither stakeholders have been consulted about the declaration made by State Commission on EITI, nor Memorandum stakeholders have been informed about this. The declaration was made agains the will of the civil society engaged with EITI and such a case is unacceptable.
  4. EITI can be effective in Azerbaijan only within international integrity and direct participation in global initiatives. The ITEI Coalition assesses the direction of isolation of Azerbaijan from international initiatives as a blow to economic, political and democratic development of the country, and calls the government to review the decision of the State Commission on EITI on withdrawal from EITI, which was made without consulting other stakeholders.

The ITEI Coalition calls its member not to be disappointed, continue joint efforts for improving transparency initiative in the country and assures that the council of Coalition will undertake necessary steps in this direction.

March 12th, 2017