White House Outlines Details of US Azerbaijan Bilateral Treaty

WASHINGTON (The White House)–At the conclusion of their White House meetings on August 1–President Clinton and Azerbaijani President Gaidar Aliyev signed a Joint Statement on US-Azerbaijani Relations and the US-Azerbaijan Bilateral Investment Treaty.

The Joint Statement reflects the broad nature of cooperation between the United States and Azerbaijan and underlines the commitment of the two Presidents to work for a closer partnership.

The statement notes: the strong interest of both Presidents in achieving peace this year in Nagorno-Karabakh; –the Presidents’ agreement on the need for a strengthened commitment by Azerbaijan to political pluralism–economic reform and rule of law; –the importance the Presidents attach to the expanding commercial relationship between the United States and Azerbaijan–particularly in the development of Caspian energy resources; –the Presidents’ desire to see Azerbaijan’s continued integration into the global economy as well as emerging European security structures; and –the Presidents’ support for closer contacts among the peoples of the two countries.

The US-Azerbaijani Bilateral Investment Treaty creates a stronger basis for trade and investment relations between the United States and Azerbaijan.

It is a key element of an open investment climate and will further strengthen economic links between the United States and Azerbaijan.

Bilateral investment treaties guarantee the right to invest in both countries on terms no less favorable than those accorded domestic or third-country investors–in most sectors.

They also guarantee the free transfer of capital–profits and royalties–freedom from performance requiremen’s that distort trade and investment flows–access to international arbitration–and internationally recognized standards for expropriation and compensation.

This is the 17th bilateral investment treaty signed during the Clinton Administration and brings the total number of bilateral investment treaties signed by the United States to 40.

The Vice President and President Aliyev separately presided over the signing of contracts between the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) and the US companies Exxon–Mobil and Chevron (and Amoco.)

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