At the I International EITI Conference held in London on June, 2003 the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev declared the decision of the government of Azerbaijan to join the EITI and support the international efforts aimed at ensuring transparency in extractive industries. Azerbaijan volunteered to become a pilot country in the EITI implementation. The countries joined in EITI, the extractive industry companies and the non-governmental organizations adopted a Declaration on the principles of the EITI.
Three reporting forms were prepared and adopted after the Conference:
Reporting form on payments received by government from foreign and local extractive industry companies;
Reporting form on payments of the foreign extractive industry companies to the host government;
Reporting forms on payments of the local extractive industry companies to the government.
After the declaration at the EITI Lancaster House Conference the decision of the government of Azerbaijan to join the EITI an interagency committee on EITI was established to implement obligations taken at the conference. Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan established Committee on EITI by its Ordinance No .224 dated November 13, 2003. The Committee is charged with the task of collecting information about receipts of the governmental agencies, companies and other governmental institutions (from foreign and local industry companies) and preparation of the government’s report.
The Committee established close contacts and extensively cooperates with the foreign and local extractive industry companies operating in the country, government and non-government organizations in order to implement the EITI in Azerbaijan. An important step towards implementation of the EITI in the Republic of Azerbaijan was taken on November 24, 2004. The Committee on the EITI, local and foreign extractive industry companies and Coalition for Improving Transparency in Extractive Industries signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). After the adoption of EITI Standard in 2013 the Memorandum of Understanding was updated.
Up to day Azerbaijan has published 18 EITI reports.
EITI process in Azerbaijan is managed by Multi Stakeholder Group. The MSG is formed by representatives of government, extractive companies and civil society, as required by EITI Standard. All decisions at MSG are made based on consensus. MSG includes 3 equal right permanent members and 3 alternatives from each party. MSG meetings are held not less hat 4 times a year. Head of government commission on EITI chairs the meetings.
In April 2015 EITI International EITI Board Meeting in Congo, Azerbaijan’s status was downgraded from compliant country to candidate country. The main reason was problems related to enabling environment for CSO in country, as well as limitations to operate freely. Azerbaijan was given 12 months to recover its status. The MSG approved action plan related to correction plan on Azerbaijan’s status. The Action plan is being implemented.