Citizens Development Corps



Azerbaijan is a Turkic, mostly Muslim country located on the western side of the Caspian Sea.В Because Azerbaijan spent most of the past 200 years as part of either Russia or the Soviet Union, there is an interesting mix of traditional and European aspects to the culture.В The vast majority of the population is Azeri, and virtually everyone speaks the Turkic language, though Russian remains the language in much of the business world. Following independence, Azerbaijan and Armenia fought a war over the region of Nagorno-Karabakh that culminated with Armenia occupying one-sixth of Azerbaijani territory.В Though no longer in open conflict, tensions are still high between the two countries and the situation has not been resolved formally.

Prior to the inception of the Soviet Union, Azerbaijan was conquered by the Russians in 1814. From that time on it was an important petroleum and natural gas supplier for both the Russian and later the Soviet empires. Oil and gas have continued to be the most important segment of the Azerbaijani economy in the years following independence, though agricultural concerns employ more than 40% of the population. Significant economic reforms have been slow to take hold in the country and there is still a great deal of government involvement — some of it quite arbitrary — in the economy.

In Azerbaijan, CDCВcurrently manages theВAzerbaijan Economic Development Program (EDP).В The program is designed to assist individual small and medium enterprises in developing their business skills and acumen, while also assisting the SME sector as a whole in working with and winning contracts from the various multinational companies operating in the region.

Country Links & Resources
Azerbaijani Embassy in Washington, D.C.
U.S. Embassy in Baku, Azerbaijan
World Factbook
USAID: Azerbaijan

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