Switzerland and Azerbaijan enjoy good political and economic relations based on a broad range of common interests. Cooperation in international financial institutions, international cooperation and energy policy are key aspects of bilateral relations between the two countries.
Bilateral Relations Switzerland–Azerbaijan
Key aspects of diplomatic relations
Azerbaijan belongs to the voting constituencies chaired by Switzerland in the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF). Switzerland attaches great importance to promoting good governance and private sector development in Azerbaijan. Since 1999 it has also engaged in technical and economic cooperation with the country.
Azerbaijan is Switzerland's main trading partner in the South Caucasus. In 2022, the volume of trade amounted to CHF 420 million. Switzerland exports mostly pharmaceutical products, but also machinery and watches to Azerbaijan, while its imports include precious metals and sources of energy. In addition, Switzerland is one of the top investors in Azerbaijan's non-oil sector and supports the country's efforts to diversify its economy.
Cooperation in education, research and innovation
Researchers from Azerbaijan can apply for Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships to the State Secretariat for Education Research and Innovation (SERI).
Peacebuilding and human security
The FDFA does not have a specific human rights program in Azerbaijan. Switzerland regularly offers its good offices as a host state for meetings between representatives of Azerbaijan and Armenia.
Development cooperation and humanitarian aid
Swiss international cooperation activities in Azerbaijan fall under the wider 2022–25 regional cooperation programme for the South Caucasus, which covers Georgia and Armenia as well. The programme aims to foster relations between cross-bordering regions and provide support for related projects, focusing on the following key areas: good governance and peace support, economic development and jobs, sustainable natural resource management and climate change.
In Azerbaijan, Switzerland promotes:
- a more favourable business environment, including a better investment climate
- a modern, transparent financial sector
- better public services and governance
- the economic empowerment of women
- local art and culture
The Swiss embassy supports and participates in various projects and events to promote Switzerland and Swiss culture, including film festivals, the 'Francophonie week' and the 'Settimana della lingua italiana'. Azerbaijan also benefits from the SDC's regional art and culture programme in the South Caucasus.
Swiss citizens in Azerbaijan
According to statistics on the Swiss abroad, there were 40 Swiss citizens living in Azerbaijan at the end of 2022.
History of bilateral relations
Switzerland recognised Azerbaijan as an independent state on 23 December 1991. In October 2005, Azerbaijan opened an embassy in Bern. Switzerland opened a cooperation office in Baku in 2001 and an embassy in late 2007, which was officially inaugurated in May 2008.