A review recently prepared by a coalition of Azerbaijan non-governmental organizations is unique—it is one of the first deep analyses of that country’s EITI report, and the first based on the new EITI standard.
It includes recommendations for increasing the quality of Azerbaijan EITI reporting and data disclosure. It also advocates for reducing opacity in transit revenues; quasi-fiscal activities of the state-owned entity (SOE); SOE relations with other state agencies; social expenses of companies; and beneficial ownership issues. To perform their analysis, coalition experts used NRGI’s EITI data analysis methodology.
Coalition board and multi-stakeholder group member Azer Mehtiyev said that significant discrepancies and shortcomings were identified as result of additional and enhanced data scrutiny. The coalition made 38 recommendations to MSG, the independent audit company, the oil SOE and the government, Mehtiyev said.
Nearly all the comments and recommendations from the review were taken into account. Alimammad Nuriyev, the coordinator of the coalition, said they were well received and will be taken seriously during the next reporting period.
The next Azerbaijan EITI report could be even more comprehensive, said coalition and MSG member Sabit Bagirov. The government commission on EITI agreed to most comments and evaluated the review positively, he said. Additionally, he said, continued expert review should lead to improved quality.
Fidan Bagirova is the Eurasia senior officer with NRGI.