Welcome to AmCham Azerbaijan

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Tax & Customs

The Tax and Customs Committee proactively addresses both existing and new tax and customs issues by maintaining a dialog with the State Tax Service, Ministry of Finance and State Customs Committee and promotes change in the tax and customs system through consistent interpretation and application of existing regulations.The committee is doing this job in several ways: by engaging its members in various legislative initiatives aimed at improving the business climate, sharing experiences across the member base on challenging tax and customs issues and establishing dialog between the business community and the governmental bodies and ministries.Powered by Froala Editor

Human Resources and Labor

The Human Resources Committee meetings are devoted to the exchange of ideas and information related to the development and management of human resources in Azerbaijan. Committee members‘ practical experiences are frequently drawn upon as a basis for presentations and discussions. A new aspect of the committee’s activity is the preparation of commentary on legislation, including the revised Labor Code. The Committee enables AmCham members to share best practices and resources in the field of human resources management.  Its efforts focus on providing essential information to AmCham members and participating Committee members through:Annual National Employee Salary SurveysQuarterly Inflation SurveysResources on the current Azerbaijani labor law legislationTraining Sessions on HR Management (delivered by committee members on voluntarily basis)Best Practices presentations (delivered by committee members)Sharing human resource management expertise with local educational institutionsThe Annual National Employee Salary Survey is presented at a fourth quarter luncheon.Powered by Froala Editor

Construction Working Group

The WG is aimed at improving real estate and construction industry in the country, by raising issues of concerns and common challenges, developing best practices, encouraging sustainability and adoption of innovation technologies and approaches within the industry. 

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Some Facts about AmCham Azerbaijan

The American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan is a leading private, non-profit business association supporting and promoting the interests of foreign and local businesses in Azerbaijan. Established in 1996, AmCham is composed of over 260 Regular and Associate Member Companies active in every sector of the Azerbaijani economy. AmCham Azerbaijan represents nearly 80% of all foreign investment, as well as a significant portion of local investment, in Azerbaijan. Through its 9 industry sector committees, Member Companies are able to share information, raise issues of common concern and propose possible solutions. Being one of the largest and the most influential organizations in the country AmCham provides the best networking opportunities. Other membership benefits include access to the data on the latest tendencies in the market (through such information resources as AmCham White Papers, AmCham Annual Reports, IMPACT Azerbaijan Quarterly Magazines, Annual National Employee Salary Surveys, Quarterly Inflation Surveys); Member-to-Member Discount Program offers; U.S. Business Visa Facilitation Program benefits, etc.

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MEMBERSHIP TYPES

There are two types of AmCham affiliation: MEMBERS and ASSOCIATES with annual fees applied

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Immediately stay up to date with every members news updates

Women's Day Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

19 February 2024

Unlocking Productivity and Connection: How SmartPoint Intranet Transforms Corporate Culture

19 February 2024

PwC INVITATION to Online Webinar: Mastering Dispute Resolution: Unveiling the Innovation of the Legal Consortium for Arbitration and Mediation (LCAM)

15 February 2024

Cyber and Technology News Digest for January

14 February 2024

February Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

13 February 2024

SMART business – a partner in building a comprehensive IT ecosystem of solutions for transforming business processes

12 February 2024

Key Transfer Pricing Compliance Aspects for 2024

30 January 2024

Book ski instructors directly on Shahdag website!

30 January 2024

Heydar Aliyev Cup - Registration Now Open!

29 January 2024

February Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

29 January 2024

Live stream: IFRS Consolidation in Practice with SAP BPC

9 January 2024

January Happenings at FS Baku

8 January 2024

SİMA İmza became the winner of the MilliNet and NETTY competitions

19 December 2023

Top law firm in Central Asia - Chambers Asia-Pacific 2024 ranks Dentons as a leader in the region

14 December 2023

Dentons affirms its strong standing in Europe in 2023 edition of IFLR1000.

14 December 2023

Festive Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

11 December 2023

Festive Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

6 December 2023

Exciting Partnership Alert: Bloom Group is now partners with BBDO CA, part of BBDO Worldwide – the most awarded global advertising agency

30 November 2023

Festive Season at Hilton Baku

30 November 2023

Get a business loan from PASHA Bank with “SİMA İmza” without leaving the office!

28 November 2023

FOUR SEASONS HOTEL BAKU DECEMBER HAPPENINGS

27 November 2023

Number of users of SİMA İmza application has exceeded 500,000

23 November 2023

AzInTelecom starts cooperation with an influential company of South Africa

22 November 2023

Introducing Festive Offers at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

20 November 2023

Apply for a loan with SİMA İmza without providing any documents!

20 November 2023

Discover the world of opportunities at InMerge Innovation Summit!

20 November 2023

"Educational Management Summit" will be organized jointly by Roof Academic Training Educational Company and Facemark

20 November 2023

Purchase a house with SİMA İmza in the SHCA “Affordable Housing” system!

17 November 2023

FOUR SEASONS HOTEL BAKU NOVEMBER HAPPENINGS

6 November 2023

November Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

30 October 2023

SOME AMENDMENTS AND CHANGES TO THE TAX CODE OF THE REPUBLIC OF AZERBAIJAN FOR 2024

26 October 2023

EY announces the launch of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2023-2024

4 October 2023

Prevent someone else from signing a document on your behalf with SİMA İmza!

2 October 2023

“CEHİZ” LAYİHƏSİ": DIALOGUE BETWEEN GENERATIONS AND STUDYING DOWRY CULTURE IN AZERBAIJAN

22 September 2023

VOLVO: For Life

20 September 2023

Hospitality Law in Azerbaijan

20 September 2023

5000 AZN gift for teachers and their family members at Greenville Residence!

20 September 2023

12.5 thousand IMEI codes connected to the network with more than 1.3 million numbers were assigned the “clone” status

19 September 2023

International Astronautical Congress in Baku brings excitement and business opportunities

11 September 2023

SEPTEMBER HAPPENINGS AT FS HOTEL BAKU

11 September 2023

Log in the electronic cabinet on E-taxes.gov.az using SİMA Token!

11 September 2023

74th International Astronautical Congress

5 September 2023

SEPTEMBER HAPENINGS AT FOUR SEASONS HOTEL BAKU

4 September 2023

Motorcycle Festival at Shahdag Mountain Resort

24 August 2023

Founding partner of Legalize Law Firm becomes a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

18 August 2023

Deadline for Sponsorship and Exhibition Application at the 74th International Astronautical Congress extended

18 August 2023

Amelioration and Water Farm partially transferred its informatıon systems to the Government Cloud

17 August 2023

ROOF Academic Training yeni TOP TALKS layihəsi ilə qarşınızdadır

15 August 2023

Opening new bank accounts has become easier with SİMA

15 August 2023

Veyseloglu Group of Companies Announces its Monthly Retail Price Index

8 August 2023

Never Ending Summer Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

7 August 2023

Legal Updates presented by BAKER TILLY

4 August 2023

Digitalization on Boards 5th Edition by Amrop

2 August 2023

Enhance Your Career in Auditing: Enroll in EKVITA Academy's Training Program

31 July 2023

Destination Fabulous Summer Happenings at Four Seasons Hotel Baku

31 July 2023

Limited Time Offer by PASHA Property Management for AMCHAM Members at Knightsbridge Residence

26 July 2023

EKVITA CONDUCTS ANTI-BRIBERY COMPLIANCE TRAINING FOR PRIVATE AND PUBLIC SECTOR ORGANIZATIONS.

11 July 2023

Exclusive Offer for AmCham Members: 5% Discount on Greenville Premium Residence Apartment Purchases

6 July 2023

Tax and Legal newsletter presented by BAKER TILLY

6 July 2023

5 tools to increase corporate sales with Cubics BMS

25 June 2023

Tax and Accounting Bulletin 2023

23 May 2023

Latest changes to legislation in April 2023

4 May 2023

Trade in your premium car to Volvo and get a special discount of 2 000 AZN

1 May 2023

SPRING HAPPENINGS AT FS HOTEL BAKU

1 May 2023

Four Seasons Hotel Baku Spring Happenings

3 April 2023

Four Seasons Hotel Baku February Happenings

13 February 2023

FOUR SEASONS HOTEL BAKU FEBRUARY HAPPENINGS

6 February 2023

“Nar” continues vocational training for special people in 2023

24 January 2023

Remaining time to start of AmCham Digital Economy and Innovations Committee’s February meeting

COMMITTEE MEETING

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Important highlights from AmCham Events
22 February 2024

AmCham Members’ February Luncheon

On February 22, 2024, the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) hosted its Members' February Luncheon, featuring esteemed guest speaker H.E. Mr. Mark Libby, U.S. Ambassador to Azerbaijan.The event commenced with a warm welcome from Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli, the Executive Director of AmCham Azerbaijan. Ms. Aslanbayli provided updates on upcoming plans and events of the Chamber. Ms. Aslanbayli also acknowledged recent leadership changes within key committees and presented recognition plaques to outgoing Chairpersons: Ms. Ellada Alishova, Chairperson of the HR Committee; Ms. Rena Afandiyeva, Deputy Chairperson of the HR Committee; and Mr. Tural Vazirov, Chairperson of the Procurement Committee, for their dedicated service.Ms. Nargiz Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu, President of AmCham Azerbaijan, extended a gracious welcome to H.E. Mr. Mark Libby, expressing sincere gratitude for his participation. President Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu underscored the Chamber's commitment to supporting businesses in Azerbaijan and thanked Ambassador Libby and the U.S. Embassy for their contributions.U.S. Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Mr. Mark Libby, warmly welcomed all attendees and expressed sincere appreciation to the Chamber for facilitating constructive dialogue within the business community. Ambassador Libby emphasized the United States' commitment to supporting Azerbaijan's business sector and fostering strong commercial ties. He highlighted the collaborative efforts of the U.S. Embassy, AmCham, and U.S. businesses to drive innovation and growth in Azerbaijan.Thereafter, Ambassador Libby participated in an open and interactive Q&A session, where he addressed all questions from the audience.The luncheon also featured presentations from member companies highlighting their portfolios and activity directions. Speakers included Mr. Jeyhun Hajiyev, CEO of PASHA Capital; Mr. Geray Yusifov, Founder of ADVIAD; and Mr. Dayanat Ahmadov, Managing Partner of Amrop Azerbaijan.The event concluded with closing remarks from Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli, thanking all participants for their attendance and active engagement. 

30 January 2024

Intellectual Property Best Practices Conference was held

On January 30, 2024, a conference on “Intellectual Property Best Practices” was jointly organized between the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) and the Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP) under the U.S. Department of Commerce. The event brought together about 100 participants, including representatives of AmCham member companies, international experts, and public entities.Executive Director of AmCham Azerbaijan Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli opened the Conference, welcoming the participants and noting AmCham’s long-standing tradition of holding legal & compliance conferences. The Conference continued with opening remarks from Hugo Guevara, Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy and Mr. Zaur Allahverdizade, Vice-President of AmCham, who emphasized the importance of IP protection in overall business environment and investment attraction. The Conference continued with engaging presentations and discussion panels on various topics such as effects of counterfeiting on international brands, open source communities' role in digital innovation, fighting illegal software use, competition in the IP ecosystem, etc.On January 31 – February 1, a two-day workshop was held for attorneys and law students on the same topics with the experts from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S and Georgian attorney experts. The two-day seminar started with opening remarks from AmCham Legal & Compliance Committee’s Deputy Chairperson Ms. Sharaf Asgarova, who welcomed the attorneys and law students. The Workshop consisted relevant case-studies related to actual IP and counterfeit cases examined by the U.S. and Georgian courts, with very active involvement of the participants. Following the workshop, the attendees received certificates of recognition from the U.S. Department of Commerce. 

24 January 2024

AmCham Azerbaijan Presented White Paper 2023 to the Membership

On January 24,2024, the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) hosted its Members’ January Luncheon dedicated to the presentation of the subsequent publication of White Paper 2023 being prepared and presented to Azerbaijan government biannually in the aim of supporting various fields of Azerbaijan’s economy. The event was attended by key stakeholders, including members of the AmCham Board of Directors, Committee chairpersons, government officials, AmCham members, and representatives of the diplomatic corps. The recommendations reflected in previous years’ White Papers were added to state programs and some of the recommendations resulted in corresponding amendments in legislation which positively aspired business environment in Azerbaijan.Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli, Executive Director of AmCham Azerbaijan, opened the luncheon by expressing gratitude to the participants and acknowledging their invaluable contributions to White Paper 2024.Ms. Nargiz Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu, President of AmCham Azerbaijan, delivered a compelling speech highlighting key aspects of the White Paper and emphasizing its significance in shaping the country's economic trajectory. She remarked, "As we reflect on the achievements of 2024, we celebrate the restoration of our country's territorial integrity, coupled with a dedication to ongoing reforms for economic enhancement. Today, we present the 8th edition of AmCham's White Paper, a testament to our commitment to a more perfect business environment and an investor-friendly market."Ms. Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu continued, providing insights into the structure of White Paper 2024. "The document consists of 9 Chapters, encompassing recommendations on concrete areas such tax, customs, finance, insurance, ICT, labor, marketing, sustainability, procurement, FMCG, judiciary, and more. Among the total of 114 recommendations, some of the most noteworthy ones include amendments to vital legislative acts, improvements in equal access to the market and financial inclusion for banking services, the establishment of rating agencies, integration of the circular economy concept, tax forecasting in the tobacco and alcohol industry, issues related to the enforcement of court decisions, digital economy, start-up ecosystem, data protection, and procedures for trade facilitation."Afterwards, AmCham committee chairpersons delved into the specific recommendations within their areas of expertise. Ms. Narmin Aslanova, Chairperson of the Tax and Customs Committee, Mr. Babek Aghayev, Chairperson of the Digital Economy and Innovations Committee, Mr. Jeyhun Mammadbayli, Chairperson of the Banking, Finance, and Insurance Committee, Mr. Kamil Valiyev, Chairperson of the Legal and Compliance Committee, Ms. Lala Afandi, Deputy Chairperson of the FMCG Committee, Mr. Tural Vazirov, Chairperson of the Procurement Committee, and Ms. Aysel Suleymanova, Chairperson of the MCBD Working Group, presented detailed insights into the recommendations outlined in the White Paper. A notable highlight of the event was the certificate presenting ceremony, honoring the chairpersons and deputy chairpersons of committees for their instrumental contributions to the development of the White Paper.To access the White Paper and gain a deeper understanding of its contents, please following links:EN:  White Paper.AZ: White Paper/AZ 

19 December 2023

AmCham Conference on Building Consumer Trust

On December 19, 2023, a conference on “Building Consumer Trust Through Enhanced Role of Businesses in Consumer Protection” was jointly organized between the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) and State Service for Antimonopoly and Consumer Market Control under the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The event brought together about 100 participants, including representatives of AmCham member companies, business associations, and public entities. Opening the event, Executive Director of AmCham Azerbaijan, Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli welcomed the participants of the conference and passed the floor to Mr. Elshad Farzaliyev, Chairperson of AmCham FMCG committee, to give a brief foreword of the event.Taking the floor, Ms. Rena Mammadova, Board Member of AmCham Azerbaijan, highlighted the significance of consumer interest to AmCham member companies and their readiness to take new innovative steps to strengthen consumer trust. During her speech, she also emphasized that the Chamber intends to extend the cooperation with both local and international companies and public entities in this direction. Afterwards, Mr. Elnur Baghirov, Deputy Head of the State Service for Antimonopoly and Consumer Market Control, particularly mentioned the necessity of public-private dialogue in the protection of consumer rights. Additionally, Mr. Baghirov noted that entrepreneurs play an important role in ensuring the right to compensation for the damage caused to the consumer such as effective resolution of disputes and the right to receive information. The significance of establishing relations on the principles of fairness at all stages of business-consumer relations was also brought to the attention of the event participants. During his speech, Mr. Baghirov also discussed other essential issues such as a number of amendments made to the legislative acts, increase on the role of entrepreneurs in protecting consumer rights, and ensuring prompt processing of consumer appeals by entrepreneurs.The conference was followed by the panel discussion on “informed and protected consumer: perspective of regulators and businesses”. Ms. Julia Polischuk from Euromonitor, Mr. Mustafa Bater from International Food and Beverage Alliance, and Mr. Ramazan Nabiyev from Food Safety Agency delivered comprehensive presentations on the topic and addressed all raised questions. Thereafter, Ms. Bensu Karahalil from Gazi University shared insights about the importance of risk assessment and communication for food safety.  Furthermore, another expert, Ms. Tutu Zeynalova touched upon existing misperceptions in food safety and role of the media in consumer protection.Summing up the conference, Mr. Elshad Farzaliyev expressed his gratitude both to the speakers and participants of the event for their valuable contributions. 

18 December 2023

AmCham Human Resources and Labor Committee's December meeting

On December 18, 2023, AmCham’s Human Resources and Labor committee’s monthly meeting was dedicated to “Update on AmCham White Paper 2023 and Labor law questions”. Guest speakers of the meeting were Ms. Parvin Anvarli, Legal Manager at Ekvita and Legal expert Mr. Mayis Aliyev.Opening the session, Chairperson of the AmCham HR & Labor Committee Mr. Parviz Tahirov presented the proposals included in the 2023 White Paper and updated the attendees about the feedback thereto, expressed by the Government representatives during the bilateral meeting with the Committee.The meeting was followed by the presentation of Ms. Parvin Anvarli, Legal Manager at Ekvita who updated the participants about the recent labor law changes. Afterwards, a comprehensive Q&A session was held. Mr. Mayis Aliyev, thoroughly answered the questions from the audience and offered relevant advise. 

15 December 2023

16th Annual AmCham Black & White Ball

On December 9, 2023, the American Chamber of Commerce of Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) hosted its 16th Annual Black & White Ball in gorgeous Buta Palace. This spectacular landmark event, a highlight of AmCham's social calendar, gathered over 500 esteemed guests, including business leaders, government officials, and ambassadors, fostering an atmosphere of elegance and camaraderie.Themed "Azerbaijan throughout the years," the evening unfolded with captivating live music, a dazzling entertainment show, and an exceptional program that delighted attendees. The event commenced with welcoming speeches from Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli, Executive Director of AmCham Azerbaijan, Ms. Nargiz Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu, President of AmCham Azerbaijan, and Mr. Hugo Guevara, Chargé d'Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Baku. During her address, Ms. Nargiz Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu underscored the importance of the ball in commemorating achievements, strength, and the unity of the Chamber. She extended appreciation to the members for their commitment and continuous collaborative efforts, which have made a meaningful impact on the development of the Azerbaijani economy. She highlighted that this year holds special significance for two distinct reasons: Azerbaijan's recent restoration of territorial integrity and the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the national leader Heydar Aliyev. It is not coincidental that this year's ball is dedicated to "Azerbaijan throughout the years," acknowledging these separate but equally important milestones.In his remarks honoring the work of AmCham, Deputy Chief of Mission Guevara noted, “For 27 years, AmCham has been fundamental to the growth of the bilateral U.S.- Azerbaijan economic relationship.”Afterwards, the floor was passed to the chief representatives of the following Sponsors:BP - Mr. Vagif Ahmadov, Ethics & Compliance regional manager of BPMcDonalds – Mr. Oscar Bogopolski, CEOProcter & Gamble - General Manager, Mr. Irakli GabriadzeFarchitects LLC - Mr. Farid Safquliyev, Chief Executive Officer Prosol - CEO of Prosol, Mr. Babek AghayevPrinceps Legem – Ms. Gulya Mamedova, CEO and FounderA memorable moment of the evening was the cake-cutting ceremony led by President Ms. Nargiz Nasrullayeva-Muduroglu and Deputy Chief of Mission Mr. Hugo Guevara.The event's excitement peaked with a raffle draw, boasting over 250 winning tickets and dance festivities that lasted until dawn. Exclusive top gifts included the iPhone 15+, Apple Watch, weekend stays at prestigious hotels, and many more. The grand prize of a round-trip ticket to Europe added an extra layer of thrill. Winners of the raffle draw (tickets 1 to 256) can check their luck at the following link and collect their prizes from the AmCham office. Please note that prizes will only be given upon presentation of the winning tickets.As part of AmCham’s commitment to supporting education for children in Azerbaijan's regions, the event showcased a charity auction. Representatives from both the Paralympic and National Olympic Committees presented exclusive items, including a 20-year Paralympic medal and a silver coin issued by the Central Bank in 2022 to commemorate the National Olympic Committee's 30th anniversary.The success of the event was made possible by the generous support of our valued sponsors: BP, Kolin, McDonald's; P&G, FARCHITECTS, PROSOL; Princeps Legem; Kapital Bank, ASBC, EXXON AZERBAIJAN LIMITED, Manzar Hajiyeva, RESM, Coca-Cola, Carlsberg; Absheron Hotel Group, Badamdar Hotel & Spa, Baku Marriott Hotel Boulevard, Bloom Group, Courtyard by Marriott Baku, Fairmont Hotel Flame Towers, Four Seasons Hotel Baku, Hillside, Hilton Hotel, Hyatt Regency, Italdesign, JW Marriott Absheron Baku, Landmark, Libraff, Mody's Baku, Office Systems, PMD Hospitality, Qalaalti Hotel & Spa, Shahdag Mountain Resort, Sheraton Baku Intourist, Spa Ceylon, and Wyndham Garden. Their unwavering support contributed significantly to the event's success, and we extend our heartfelt appreciation to each and every sponsor for their commitment. 

4 December 2023

AmCham Executive Director Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli participated at the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28)

On December 4, 2023, Executive Director of American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli participated at the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28)This pivotal event represents the 28th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Being an annual gathering, COP serves as the preeminent multilateral decision-making forum on climate change, boasting near-universal representation from countries worldwide.COP stands as the global stage where nations converge to negotiate and adopt measures addressing the urgent climate crisis. Key objectives include limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius, aiding vulnerable communities in adapting to climate change impacts, and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.Ms. Aslanbayli was invited by AmCham member company and partner of the event- "Sustainera Solutions”. This event, with the theme of" Practices to strengthen financing for climate transition through public and private interventions", underscores the importance of collaboration between public and private sectors in addressing climate challenges.AmCham Azerbaijan, recognizing the private sector as a crucial driver of sustainable development, actively encourages its members to embrace Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) principles. This commitment aims to help Azerbaijan leverage unique experiences and contribute to a future that is both environmentally conscious and economically vibrant.Ms. Aslanbayli's participation adds a significant dimension to the event, bringing valuable insights and expertise to the discourse on the intersection of public and private interventions in climate financing. The focus remains on combating climate change and nurturing a more sustainable global economy.Ms. Aslanbayli emphasized AmCham’s recommendation to the government which were included in the 2023 edition of its by Annual Policy Paper known as The White Paper. The recommendations were dedicated to the transition to circular economy, transition to Green Transportation, Implementation of ESG Principles. Within the framework of this highly productive visit, United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) was a great success, building inspiration, and motivation to strengthen international relations and promote innovation within the business environment. In addition, Azerbaijan was confirmed as the Host of COP29 in 2024.

22 November 2023

AmCham Tax & Customs Committee's November Meeting

On November 22, 2023, AmCham Tax & Customs Committee held its monthly meeting dedicated to the “Implementation of the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project in Azerbaijan”. Invited guest speakers from the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration of Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) were Mr. Andrew Auerbach and Mr. Tomas Balco, Senior Tax Advisors of the Global Relations and Development Division, and Ms. Sara Shurmur, Advisor of BEPS and Developing Countries Unit.The meeting was opened with the welcome speech of Ms. Narmin Aslanova, Chairperson of AmCham Tax and Customs Committee. Highlighting the importance of the topic for businesses operating in Azerbaijan, Ms. Aslanova introduced the guest speakers to the participants.Afterwards, guest experts from OECD made presentations and explained in detail the procedures that need to be followed in order to ensure compliance with the OECD/G20 Inclusive Framework on BEPS, which has been recently signed by Azerbaijan and is pending ratification. Following the comprehensive presentations, an extended Q&A session was carried out, whereby relevant practical questions raised by the participants were addressed in kind by the experts, both from the OECD and the State Tax Service of Azerbaijan.At the end of the meeting, Ms. Aslanova expressed her gratitude both to the speakers and participants of the meeting for their valuable contributions. 

26 October 2023

AmCham Azerbaijan and State Tax Service held a Joint Tax Conference on “Tax Transparency: Achievements and Challenges"

On October 26, 2023, a tax conference on "Tax Transparency: Achievements and Challenges" was jointly organized between the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan (AmCham Azerbaijan) and the State Tax Service (STS) under the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The event brought together about 150 participants, including representatives of AmCham member companies and government officials.The conference covered essential topics such as using modern tools to enhance tax transparency, combatting the shadow economy, the role of modern retail advancements in the application of tax reforms, and etc. Opening the event, Executive director of AmCham Azerbaijan Ms. Gulnara Aslanbayli, underscored the significance of the 8th joint tax conference, which coincided with the 100th anniversary of the birth of the national leader Heydar Aliyev. She emphasized that this conference played a pivotal role in fostering a constructive state-business dialogue, building mutual trust, and enhancing public cooperation. She also highlighted the prevailing environment of productive collaboration and effective relations between the State Tax Service and AmCham Azerbaijan.Ms. Narmin Aslanova, Chairperson of the AmCham Tax and Customs Committee stressed that extensive discussions had been conducted among the Chamber's members regarding proposed changes to the Tax Code. She emphasized that these conversations were instrumental in building mutual trust and understanding between businesses and the government. Afterwards, Mr. Ilgar Mehti, First Vice-President of AmCham Azerbaijan, emphasized the increasing responsibilities shared by the state and the business community. He noted the crucial role of such meetings in preparation of the "White Paper" prepared by the Chamber. Mr. Mehti also emphasized that the business community advocates for a balanced tax policy. Mr. Orkhan Nazarli, Head of the State Tax Service (STS), expressed his deep appreciation for the strong and productive business relationship between the STS and AmCham Azerbaijan. He highlighted the significance of the issues addressed in AmCham's "White Paper" concerning taxation, emphasizing that many of the concerns raised in the previous report have already been successfully resolved.During the event, Mr. Nazarli provided insights into the structural changes within the State Tax Service. He revealed the establishment of a new unit dedicated to the analysis of taxpayer risks and monitoring, as well as the creation of an Ombudsman's office. He assured participants that these developments would enhance the STS's ability to address appeals and complaints in a more effective manner. Mr. Nazarli shared that the current Tax Administration structure is organized based on taxpayer classification and geographic regions. However, he announced future plans to transition to a functional area-based management approach. This shift will lead to more unified tax policy and administration, fostering transparent relationships between the fiscal authority and taxpayers.He also emphasized the positive outcomes in fiscal transparency indicators, noting that the growth rate of tax revenues exceeds the nominal growth rate of GDP by 7.7 percent. Mr. Nazarli underscored the government's keen interest in economic growth, entrepreneurial empowerment, and the establishment of a stable income system. He specifically mentioned the potential for micro-entrepreneurs to evolve into small businesses and, subsequently, medium-sized enterprises, leading to significant improvements in the economy. Mr. Nazarli confirmed the tax policy's commitment to supporting this process. Furthermore, he highlighted the upcoming changes in tax policy, initiatives to promote taxation in specific segments, and the application of tax instruments to eliminate unfair competition. He also revealed the positive approaches awaiting business entities in tax administration.Mr. Nuran Karimov, managing partner of "Deloitte Azerbaijan" company, said that serious changes have been observed in the direction of reducing the "shadow economy". It was emphasized that the creation of a database with open register access for business entities can contribute to the process of selecting counterparties, the possible positive effects of tax and capital amnesty on the sustainability of transparency, and the importance of evaluating the possibilities of transition to the universal declaration system in the future.Mr. Nijat Imanov, Head of the Tax Policy Department at the STS, provided insights into the changes envisaged in the Tax Code for the upcoming year within the budget and tax policy. He emphasized that the government's top priorities are reducing the tax burden on businesses, promoting entrepreneurial activities, and alleviating the tax burden on the population through social benefits. Expanding the tax base and enhancing tax control mechanisms and administration are central to the strategy. The overarching goals of the tax policy continue to be supporting businesses, optimizing tax burdens, and minimizing risks. Mr. Imanov also mentioned the extensive discussions have taken place with business entities to ensure broad consensus on these changes.Thereafter, Ms. Natavan Ibrahimova, Director of the "Oba" Market Chain, delved into the role of "Modern retail" in the application of tax reforms. In her presentation, Ms. Arzu Hajiyeva, Tax Partner at "EY Azerbaijan," addressed the need for transparency in economic transactions, discussing both the existing opportunities and challenges in this field. She also shared insights on approaches related to managing high-risk taxpayers. Next speaker Mr. Rashad Abbasov, Head of the Tax Group at "NEQSOL Holding Azerbaijan," emphasized the importance of tax transparency and the necessity of maintaining a balance between tax transparency and tax enforcement. Another tax expert, Ms. Gunel Sadiyeva, Tax Director at "PWC Azerbaijan," discussed the role of trust in increasing transparency, drawing from results obtained through surveys conducted among the taxpayers.Furthermore, Mr. Elshan Rahimli, Chief of the General Department of Economic Analysis and Accounting control at the STS, provided valuable insights into the progress made in reducing the "shadow economy." Mr. Rahimli discussed notable achievements in enhancing transparency within the economy, including growth indicators in the non-oil sector, turnover levels, the active taxpayer base, and the increasing number of labor contracts. Notably, he emphasized that voluntary compliance during the period of January to August 2023 exceeded 95 percent of total receipts.To sum up the event, Mr. Orkhan Nazarli, shared his thoughts on the proposals and issues raised during the conference presentations and speeches. He offered contextual insights into the State Tax Service's overarching perspective.At the end of the conference, Samira Musayeva, Deputy Head of the STS, addressed numerous questions posed by members of AmCham Azerbaijan. She also highlighted several positive approaches that can benefit businesses.Th conference served as a valuable platform for shedding light on the significant progress made in enhancing transparency, encouraging voluntary compliance, and strengthening the partnership between government entities and the business community.Click to see the highlights from the Conference. 

25 October 2023

AmCham Human Resources & Labor Committee Celebrates 25th Anniversary of National Salary Survey

AmCham Human Resources & Labor Committee marked a significant milestone on October 25, 2023, by hosting a special session dedicated to the 25th presentation of the National Salary Survey. The event was an exclusive commemoration of the project's quarter-century journey.The session commenced with a warm welcome from Mr. Parviz Tahirov, Deputy Chairperson of the committee. Mr. Tahirov extended his greetings to all participants and provided a brief overview of the event. Notably, he emphasized that the National Salary Survey project was celebrating its 25th anniversary this year and invited all contributors to join in the celebratory cake-cutting ceremony.The session, dedicated exclusively to the 25th Anniversary of the project, featured discussions on the following key topics:Presentation of the Results: An in-depth presentation of the results and key findings of the AmCham National Salary Survey for the year 2023.Evolution of the Survey: A comprehensive look at the main changes and improvements made over 25 years in the National Salary Survey.Looking Ahead: An interactive discussion about the Salary Survey for the year 2024, where valuable comments and suggestions from participants were encouraged.Following Mr. Tahirov's welcome address, Mr. Ruslan Aghayev, an expert in Leadership, Management, and Rewards, expressed his gratitude to everyone who has been part of this vital survey over the years. Mr. Aghayev then proceeded to present the latest results and updates on the "AmCham National Salary Survey." He shared insights into the various stages of the survey, highlighted important statistical data, and provided information on potential improvements and innovations for future reports.The presentation was followed by an engaging Q&A session, where all questions and concerns of the participants were addressed by the speakers. Click to see the highlights from the event.