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Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

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  • Կարեն Կարապետյանը արձակուրդը կանցկացնի Արցախում

    ՀՀ վարչապետ Կարեն Կարապետյանն այսօրվանից՝ օգոստոսի 15-ից, մեկնել է կարճատև արձակուրդ, որն անցկացնելու է Արցախի Հանրապետությունում:

    ՍՏԵՓԱՆԱԿԵՐՏ, 15 օգոստոսի, ԱՐՑԱԽՊՐԵՍ: Այս մասին հայտնել է ՀՀ վարչապետի խոսնակ Արամ Արարատյանը:

    «Հանգստի ընթացքում Կարեն Կարապետյանը շարունակելու է մշտական կապի մեջ մնալ կառավարության անդամների հետ»,-նշել է նա:

    ՀՀ վարչապետ Կարեն Կարապետյանն այսօրվանից՝ օգոստոսի 15-ից, մեկնել է կարճատև արձակուրդ, որն անցկացնելու է Արցախի Հանրապետությունում:


    • The crew of the ZSU-23х4 "Shilka", which destroyed the Azerbaijani UAV



        Pakistan’s Ambassador to Azerbaijan Saeed Khan Mohmand told Azerbaijani media outlets (via AzerNews) that Islamabad was committed to strengthening defence ties with Baku.

        In July, Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) was awarded a contract to supply 10 Super Mushshak basic trainers to the Azerbaijani Air and Air Defence Force (or Azeri Air Force).

        Besides additional armament sales, Ambassador Mohmand noted that joint exercises and joint military production are also areas of bilateral interest.

        These echo the sentiments of Azerbaijan’s Ambassador to Pakistan Ali Alizadeh, who had also called for bilateral military cooperation and joint defence production in December.

        Notes & Comments:

        In November, the Azeri Air Force reportedly rekindled its interest in the JF-17 Thunder multi-role fighter. PAC has been marketing the fighter as an affordable and effective successor to legacy platforms, including the MiG-21 and Su-25 currently in service with Azerbaijan.

        A sale to Baku would be the third JF-17 sale. However, considering the apparent scale of its requirements and its relative affluence, a sale to Azerbaijan could amount to the largest defence export program for the Thunder, PAC and Pakistan’s defence industry to-date.

        Although Pakistan is interested in securing big-ticket sales, Azerbaijan can prove to be a valuable partner in several fields. In fact, partnering and co-production appears to be one of Baku’s aims in its engagement with Pakistan. Such collaboration can provide economies of scale and co-funding support.

        Interestingly, Azerbaijan also has ties with South Africa’s privately-owned defence vendor Paramount Group, which is co-producing its Matador and Marauder mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles with the Azeri defence industry. With South Africa interested in expanding its defence ties with Pakistan, there may be several multilateral opportunities.

        However, although pooling defence requirements can provide scale and support funding, differences in requirements and priorities will have a dampening effect on the collaborative potential. Theoretically, the two countries could explore potential in artillery guns, tanks, tracked armoured vehicles, wheeled light armoured vehicles, patrol boats, radars and air defence systems and naval solutions. While the potential is alluring, many of these are unlikely to come to fruition due to differing requirements and other factors.

        However, there are more modest areas of possible collaboration that can be feasible, assuming they are of mutual interest. For example, both Pakistan and Azerbaijan are eager to equip their respective armed forces branches and law-enforcement agencies with light armoured vehicles, be it MRAP vehicles or light-armoured 4×4 utility vehicles. Pakistan could examine the prospect of buying into Azeri-South African efforts currently in place, contributing with scale and benefitting by receiving new vehicles and a portion of the parts manufacturing.

        The two countries can also examine maritime security solutions. In fact, Azerbaijan reportedly operates Soviet-era Triton mini-SSKs. Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works (KSEW) could look at replacing those mini-SSKs with its own new-generation mini-SSK. Other relevant areas could be fast attack crafts, patrol boats, search-and-rescue boats and rapid intervention boats. There are active bids or probable near-term requirements for these platforms in both countries. Moreover, pursuing them will not be as complex nor as costly as marquee defence programs.

        Overall, focused exploration and genuine engagement can yield positive results, albeit in the modest areas of asymmetrical and internal security hardware. However, even ambitious realms of collaboration require substantive foundations, which can be built through comparatively low-cost programs, especially those with limited variance in technical requirements and complications.

        Pakistan’s Ambassador to Azerbaijan Saeed Khan Mohmand reiterated Islamabad’s interest in strengthening defence ties with Baku


        • Guys, I'd like to ask a question, any information about our acquisition of getting new T-72B4s or T-72B3Ms our MOD would have showed it off by now.


          • Originally posted by Azad View Post
            " Oil Price and Russian Pressure Put Azerbaijan’s Strategic Gas Project at Risk

            The Southern Gas Corridor, a $45 billion dollar pipeline project delivering gas from Azerbaijan to Europe via Turkey, is supposed to start operations by 2020.

            But Azerbaijan’s ability to uphold its financial commitments towards the project is under serious pressure from continued low oil prices. The drop in the price of oil was initially treated as temporary by Azerbaijani officials, but has already had a devastating impact on most sectors of the country’s economy, exacerbated by the state’s mismanagement of funds.

            Baku has only secured $1.4 billion of the at least $4 billion needed for the Trans-Anatolian pipeline (TANAP), the first part of the route, and needs to secure an additional $2-3 billion for the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) which brings the gas to Europe."

            Where are they getting their money from then??? Russian weaponry keeps coming in.


            • Originally posted by HyeSocialist View Post

              Where are they getting their money from then??? Russian weaponry keeps coming in.
              Assuming they have around 30 Billion in assets (no cash most likely investments) with their “potential” future revenues from oil/gas sales they should have around 50 billions line of credit (we don’t know how much they already used from it).
              The tipping point will be when their interest payments will be higher than they revenues. They are tightening the distribution towards their population GDP and some of government spending.
              Won’t last long! They just have a “credit card” that will eventually halt all their spending and turn them to debt slaves. My estimate a year is left if oil prices stay around $50.


              • Azerbaijan: Banking Crisis Gives Rise to Loan Sharks

                August 14, 2017 - 2:13pm, by Durna SafarovaThe decline in AzerbaijanÂ’s legitimate lending sector and new rules introduced by the Central Bank resulted in the rise of loan sharks and pawn shops, analysts contend. (Photo: Central Bank of Azerbaijan)
                The decline in Azerbaijan’s legitimate lending sector and new rules introduced by the Central Bank resulted in the rise of loan sharks and pawn shops, analysts contend. (Photo: Central Bank of Azerbaijan)
                Namig Ibrahimov is a young entrepreneur, building an online shopping platform that offers imported clothing to Azerbaijani customers. To invest in his business, though, he is getting loans not from a bank, but from a loan shark.

                “I don’t trust banks,” Ibrahimov told “It is riskier than going to loan sharks.”

                Working through loan sharks, of course, carries substantial risks as well. It is illegal, for one, and the interest is far higher than for a bank loan – about 10 percent per month (over 200 percent yearly), as opposed to around 26 percent annually from a bank. “It’s a swamp,” Ibrahimov said. “It’s so difficult to get out of it.”

                But Ibrahimov is not alone: loan sharks are an increasingly popular way for Azerbaijanis to get money, amid a banking crisis that has rocked the country’s legitimate financial sector.

                On February 21, 2015 – now known in Azerbaijan as “Black Saturday” – the government sharply devalued the local currency, the manat, which ultimately led to the closure of 13 banks and the manat losing more than half its value.

                As a result, Azerbaijanis with bank loans – which were usually denominated in dollars – saw the cost of their obligations skyrocket overnight. Since the devaluation, more than 200,000 Azerbaijanis have been sued by banks for failure to repay their loans,” said one member of parliament, Zahid Oruj. In May, the state-run International Bank of Azerbaijan – the country’s largest lender – defaulted as a result of a large number of bad loans.

                This has, at times, had tragic consequences for borrowers. In February, a 53-year-old man, Jabrail Jabrayilov, was at a bank to discuss a loan he had taken out for about $1,020. Told he would have to pay an additional $500 in interest on top of that, Jabrayilov had a heart attack on the spot. His son blamed the death on the stress of trying to deal with the loan, local media reported.

                After the devaluation, the Central Bank of Azerbaijan instituted new rules aimed at forcing banks to be more selective in giving out loans. One requirement was that borrowers had to be employed, which excluded entrepreneurs and those in the informal economy.

                Borrowers also want to get loans denominated in manats, to help protect against further devaluations, while banks continue to want to loan in only dollars.

                “Neither side wants to lose, since the currency is not stable,” said Samir Aliyev, an economist and editor-in-chief of the magazine Economic Forum.

                Loan sharks are more likely to loan in manats, albeit at exploitative interest rates. “The tightening of credit policy resulted in the rise of loan sharks and pawn shops,” Aliyev said.

                Loan sharks in Azerbaijan operate in the shadows, by word of mouth, offering loans on collateral like gold or real estate. Of the several contacted by through intermediaries, none agreed to be interviewed.

                The scale of loan sharking is difficult to gauge, given its underground character. But there has been a spike in court cases involving usury, and the topic has become a frequent one in local media.

                In one case, a Baku woman, Saadat Mammadova, appealed to police after loan sharks took her nine-year-old daughter hostage. She had borrowed 6,000 manats from a loan shark, using gold as collateral. She had been paying it off slowly, but after two years, the interest had ballooned to 100,000 manats, and the loan shark claimed she had not been paying it back. She managed to get her daughter back after paying 2,000 manats, but her case against the loan sharks is still ongoing.

                In another case, which made it to the Baku Serious Crimes Court, a Baku teacher, Solmaz Sadiyeva, was accused of defrauding several of her colleagues into helping her pay off a debt to a loan shark that had gotten out of control.

                The rise in loan sharking also can be seen in the decline in the legitimate lending sector. According to the most recent Central Bank data, the portfolio of legitimate creditors amounted to 16.4 billion manats (about $9.7 billion), as of the beginning of 2017, a 24 percent decrease from the year before.

                “The government should have solved this problem by bailing out the banks. But it didn’t, and instead just let the banks and clients deal with it,” Aliyev said.

                Ibrahimov, the entrepreneur, has had several friends financially ruined by loan sharks. “One friend took a loan of $6,500, and wasn’t able to pay it back. Her debt was increasing every day, and in the end she had to sell her apartment,” he said.

                Another friend who had similar problems with a 10,000 manat loan (at the time, about $5,900) didn’t have an apartment to sell and had to flee the country.

                Still, he said, he is going to stick with loan sharks rather than deal with banks. “Yes, it’s illegal, but that’s why you don’t risk getting involved with the police or courts,” Ibrahimov said. “All you lose is your collateral.”


                • Originally posted by HyeSocialist View Post

                  Where are they getting their money from then??? Russian weaponry keeps coming in.
                  YEREVAN, JULY 28, ARMENPRESS. Azerbaijan has signed a total of 11,2 billion dollar worth loan agreements with international financial, banking and other credit organizations until July 1, 2017. This figure is 285,4 million dollar more compared to January 1, azadliq news agency reported.

                  ^^^ I don't think they are close to the debt limit yet. We will know when major riots will spill out in the streets.


                  • Ministry of Emergency Situations of RA


                    • Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army