Project “Civil Society Dialogue”, jointly initiated by the Council of Europe and the European Union in Azerbaijan, was presented in Baku on June 2.
Addressing the presentation ceremony, Ali Hasanov, the Azerbaijani president’s aide for public and political affairs, said that Azerbaijan pays much attention to formation and development of civil societies and NGOs in the country.
“We can say that Azerbaijan managed to create a favorable legal framework the regulating activities of public organizations. Some public sector representatives and international organizations have lately raised their concern over some amendments made to the law, thinking that they would be an obstacle before development of the third sector. But experience shows that these amendments are in fact intended to enhance transparency, accountability, and discipline in this area, and facilitate relations between NGOs and state bodies,” Hasanov noted.
According to information released in mid-2016, there are up to 3,000 NGOs registered in Azerbaijan, and the total number of non-commercial organizations is well over 4,000, the top official said.
At present, Azerbaijan is considered the largest donor for civil society organizations, according to Hasanov.
He went on to say that the Council of State Support to Non-Governmental Organizations under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Youth Foundation under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, created for this purpose, are specialized institutions in financing projects of all NGOs, including youth organizations.
More than AZN 33 million was allocated to more than 5,000 projects through these organizations over three years and a half, the top official said.
Hasanov said stressed that the strategic objectives of Azerbaijan regarding civil societies are reflected in “Azerbaijan 2020 Vision into the Future” Development Concept.