Ramin Guluzade: “We are ready to cooperate with banks”

Minister of Transport, Communications and High Technologies Ramin Guluzade answered the questions from the FED.az website. We bring to your attention the interview covering data security issues in Azerbaijan, their safe keeping and the protection against cyber attacks.
-Mr. Minister, our first question is related to the sources of funding for the projects implemented by your ministry. It is interesting, what is the level of participation of the country’s banks in this issue?

- As you know, a number of large projects have been implemented for the development of ICT in Azerbaijan. Of course, there is a need for financial support for the implementation of these projects. These projects are supported by our state and a special attention is given to their financial provision. At the same time, there is a need for loans to implement certain projects. First of all, our ministry prefers domestic financing resources and country banks and is ready to cooperate with them.
- Several banks in Azerbaijan were subjected to cyber attacks, and great sum  of money  was withdrawn from some banks. At the same time, a new Data Center was opened in our country. Can Azerbaijani banks take advantage of its capabilities? What advantages can it give them in terms of security?
-It should be noted that the Data Center operating in Azerbaijan is the most secure data center in the region and meets the TIER-3 standards. The equipment of the world’s leading ICT companies has been installed here. The Center has been functioning for over a year. Among its clients are state agencies, local and influential foreign companies. I would also like to note that we have already started building a backup data center in the city of Yevlakh. In the future, we are planning to build a new and larger data center. Work in this direction is already under way.
-Probably, the Data Center, along with security, will also be economically more favourable for banks...
-Of course. The Data Center has great advantages not only for our banks, but also for the business sector. There is no need for the acquisition of equipment and service prices are more profitable. Most importantly, I would like to emphasize that these services are more secure and  provided  by professional specialists.
- It is becoming clear that the projects you carry out will be economically viable, and you will have to take out a loan.
- Probably. It should be noted that the Ministry of Transport, Communications and High Technologies  is implementing  a number of projects. At the same time, we are still attracting foreign specialists. After a full evaluation of each project, we start to implement it. Of course, we have many projects and we try to develop all the directions for which we are responsible. It is possible to take out  loans for large-scale projects. Our government  applies huge resources  to finance these projects. The construction of a major innovation center has been launched in Azerbaijan with the support of Mr. President Ilham Aliyev and Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva. This innovation center will serve the implementation of young people’s  innovative ideas and  development of startups in the future.
- Probably, it will be built in Baku...

- Yes. It has already been designed and territory has been allocated. I suppose that the construction will begin in the coming months.

- How do you solve the personnel issues?
-There are good specialists in Azerbaijan. Meanwhile, new developments are taking place in the world of ICT every day, and we are flexible enough to upgrade the knowledge and skills of our new staff in line with these changes. As an exchange of experience, we invite experts from abroad and conduct seminars and also send our employees abroad.
- Are there any plans to use the experience of technology parks? How do you assess this in terms of technological innovation and application in business?
- You know, we are interested in the principle of operation of technoparks in each of our foreign trips. Because  technoparks are one of the important directions for the future development of our economy. When the new innovation center starts functioning, new projects will be formed there. In the center, we will be able to carry out work related to software, i.e. to produce “software”. As for the production of technical component, as you know, this process is expected to be implemented in Pirallahi. Naturally, there is a need to intensify work in this direction. To this end, we are cooperating with relevant government agencies and investment companies.

-Mr. Minister, thank you for answering our questions.
-I thank you for the interesting questions.

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