The Council of State Support to Non-Governmental Organizations under the Auspices of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan held a regional conference on "NGO-Government relations: gained experience and opportunities for new cooperation" in Mingachevir on 22 September with representatives of NGOs from Agjabedi, Yevlakh, Gabala, Beylagan, Barda, Oghuz, Kurdamir, Goychay, Zagatala, Goranboy, Zardab, Ismayilli and local executive authorities. The Deputy Head of the Mingachevir City Executive Power’s Socio-Political and Humanitarian Affairs Department Sahib Aliyev noted that as a result of the government's continued support, NGOs have become the leading public institutions in the regions as well. Stating that necessary opportunities for the development of NGOs were created, S. Aliyev said that they cooperate effectively with local NGOs. Vusal Guliyev, deputy chairman of the Social Policy Department of the Presidential Administration of Azerbaijan, said that the Azerbaijani society can’t be imagined without NGOs. The involvement of NGOs in the solution of social problems is increasing year by year. V. Guliyev emphasized the importance of establishing effective cooperation relations with NGOs in the regions. The Deputy Chairman of the Council, by the order of President Ilham Aliyev, stated that the adoption of the "Concept of the State Support to Non-Governmental Organizations of the Republic of Azerbaijan" and the establishment of the Council on State Support to NGOs under the Auspices of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan has laid the foundation for the development of civil society in our country.
V. Guliyev says that the existing NGO-government relations in our country are learned as a successful example in the world. Vusal Gulliyev noted that the state also promotes civic initiatives by supporting NGOs. This, in turn, allows every citizen of the country to take an active part in society and promote the activities of NGOs in the field of protection of national interests. NGOs should be involved in the solution of socially significant problems and take important measures for the development of the state and society. Executive Director of the Secretariat of the Council Farasat Gurbanov spoke about the importance of consistent steps taken by the state to develop the NGO sector after Azerbaijan restored its independence. The Executive Director said that as a result of the political will of Mr. Ilham Aliyev, NGOs have become the main partners of state bodies in all regions of our country and their capacity for action has increased. Farasat Gurbanov stressed that NGO-governmental relations have increased from cooperation to partnership. "As the most active part of society, NGOs play an important role in solving social problems and promoting civic initiatives. State takes the necessary steps for the development of NGOs. NGOs implement projects every year in social, humanitarian, environmental, economic spheres, contributing to educating society and addressing social problems.".
Speaking about the Council's services to NGOs, Gurbanov also made a wide presentation about the principles of formation of the organization he represents, grant competition topics. The executive director noted that the main purpose of the Council's conferences, trainings and seminars is to increase the knowledge and skills of NGOs and to increase the effectiveness of their projects: "Only in 2016 the Council allocated more than 5.3 million AZN to 556 projects in 32 subject areas. The number of beneficiaries of these projects exceeded 100,000. Within the framework of the implemented projects, 32 books have been published, 23 sites, 26 films, 29 social videos have been prepared".
F.Gurbanov also spoke about the activities of the The Government and Civil Society Dialogue Platform on Open Government Initiative established on 9 September 2016 and the results achieved over the past year. Fuzuli Asadov, Head of the Mingachevir Regional NGOs Resource and Training Center , Chairman of the Parent Association Farman Nabiyev, Chairman of the Mingachevir Department of the Karabakh Disabled People and Martyrs' Families Public Union Aliaga Bandaliyev, Chairman of Sheki ETMG PU Alirza Maharramov, Head of Beylegan Youth Enlightenment and Social Development Public Union Zaur Guliyev and representatives of the executive authorities of the region spoke about development of government relations and the issues they are facing during the project implementation process.