President Ilham Aliyev watches the new AZERTAC building

Baku, December 27, AZERTAC

The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has seen the new building of the Azerbaijan State News Agency-AZERTAC.

The chairman of the Board of Directors of AZERTAC, Aslan Aslanov, informed the Head of State about the conditions created in the building.

It is noted that a new building was constructed at 70 Ataturk Avenue in Baku in accordance with the relevant orders of the President of Azerbaijan. The building has nine floors and a parking lot. Advanced safety measures have been considered in the building, which has been built according to modern standards, is resistant to a magnitude 8 earthquake, has a fire alarm and security system, two underground water tanks with a capacity of 100 tons each.

A statue of national leader Heydar Aliyev is installed on the first floor of the octagonal star-shaped building. There are also photo posts depicting the participation of national leaders, President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva in various media events, their interviews with local and foreign media, the President’s speeches to the nation during the second war of Karabakh, as well as visits to liberated territories. There is also a museum displaying the technical equipment that AZERTAC used at different times.

It is noted that the Agency, which published its first report on March 2, 1920, was able to cover events in the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic and the work carried out by the government for only 58 days. During the Soviet period, depending on the nature of public and political events, he had a different fate and his name changed seven times.

Before the national leader Heydar Aliyev came to power in Azerbaijan, AZERTAC, which was somewhat behind, became one of the main news agencies of the former Soviet republic thanks to the determination, personal authority and attention of the national leader. The exhibits in the museum section of the new building are proof of that. AZERTAC was the next, after TASS and Ukrinform, to become a fully computerized news agency of the Soviet Union. The agency used the T-100 teletype and a computer from the Italian company Olivetti, the most modern equipment of its time. AZERTAC is one of three agencies operating with this team, which allows it to transmit live official documents – decisions, decrees and orders – via remote.

In the years of independence, the great leader Heydar Aliyev paid special attention to AZERTAC in the implementation of state policies. As a result of the decree on the reorganization of the Agency signed on March 3, 1995, AZERTAC received the status of a state information organ, was endowed with a budget, and access to the international information space was established as its main goal. This marked the beginning of the establishment of close relations with regional and international media for AZERTAC.

This strategic path was successfully pursued under the leadership of President Ilham Aliyev. Currently, Azerbaijan, represented by AZERTAC, is one of the 13 members of the World News Service Council with voting rights. AZERTAC is a member office of the Asia-Pacific News Service Organization (OANA), and the OCI Association of News Service (UNA).

The availability of modern equipment is very important to adequately address the new challenges of the information space. The new building, equipped with state-of-the-art technology and office equipment, meets all the requirements for efficient work for both journalists and technical staff. This building has an editorial room that complies with international standards, a studio equipped with multimedia facilities, an operational round table and a television system. The building features a 180-seat conference room equipped with simultaneous translation equipment, a 90-seat canteen, a rich collection library, medical and sports halls for various events.

The new AZERTAC building, which operates around the clock, including weekends and holidays, has a separate transformer station and a diesel generating station to meet emergency power needs. The modern boiler system ensures centralized ventilation of the building on an all-season basis. Parking for 60 cars has been created in the basement and outside the building, the area has been completely laid out and the adjacent road has been paved.

Currently a member of seven regional and international media organizations, AZERTAC has signed cooperation agreements with about 50 foreign news agencies in recent years and maintains information exchange with about 150 agencies. These include TASS (Russia), Xinhua (China), Anadolu (Turkey), The Associated Press (UK), DPA (Germany), IRNA (Iran), ANSA (Italy), KYODO (Japan), Yonhap (Republic of Korea) and another influential national news station. The agency broadcasts news in eight languages: Azerbaijani, Russian, English, German, French, Arabic, Chinese and Spanish, as well as video news in five languages. AZERTAC has 21 correspondent offices abroad.

Witnessing Azerbaijan’s history since the 20th century, AZERTAC is currently writing the 21st century chronicle. The expansive conditions created in the new building create confidence that the agency will continue to mobilize all its creative and technical resources to disseminate information about the country’s successes, including large-scale reconstruction work in the liberated territories.

Responding to a question from a correspondent for Azerbaijan Television, Aslan Aslanov said: “This building has been built by order of President Ilham Aliyev. Thanks to the special care and attention of Mr. President, such a beautiful building has been achieved. In total, 225 employees have the opportunity to work effectively , using modern technical means and innovative technology. These conditions have inspired our team to work even more productively.”

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Matt Thompson

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