By Peter Tase
In December 2-5, 2014, Azerbaijan will be hosting the International Telecommunications and Information Technologies Conference and Exhibition in Baku. The BakuTel 2014 Conference is the largest regional event in telecommunication and information technologies in the Caspian region, and this year will celebrate its 20th anniversary. BakuTel 2013 was attended by 300 companies from 27 countries. This event has always been attended by President Ilham Aliyev, and this year he is expected to deliver the opening remarks of this conference which will bring together 300 companies from 28 countries.
In his greetings to BakuTel 2013 organizers, President Ilham Aliyev stated: “The International Bakutel Exhibition and Conference, held every year in Azerbaijan, creates favourable opportunities for the organizations representing various countries, scientists and experts to come together and share their ideas, expand business contacts, and become familiar with advanced technological achievements and innovations.” 
This event will contribute towards further strengthening of regional cooperation in the areas of telecommunications, science and research. Leading ICT companies, Azerbaijani mobile operators, telecommunications corporations, Internet service providers, system integration companies are expected to participate in the exhibition this December. Forty percent of the exhibitors are regular participants who come to Baku every year. Last year, BakuTel was attended by experts from Afghanistan, the United States, Hungary, Italy and Israel; among the VIP guests were Dr Hamadoun I. Touré, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union, and Mrs. Zsuzsanna Nemeth, an economist and Hungary’s Minister of National Development. This year, a higher number of ministers from the governments of regional countries as well as scholars and world renowned leaders in the areas of Telecommunication and Information Technology are expected to participate .
On March 18, 2014, Ali Abbasov, the Minister of Telecommunication and High Technologies paid a working visit to Argentina. Minister Abbasov met with his counterparts in the Argentinian Government, including the Minister of Federal Planning, Public Investment and Services of Argentina. During this visit, his Argentinian colleagues expressed a great interest in attending the upcoming BakuTel 2014 Conference and introducing new advancements in the satellite industry, nuclear technology and presenting the potential of Argentinian Telecommunication Industry to invest in Azerbaijan.
The two governments reached an agreement to organize the first Azerbaijan-Argentina Telecommunications and High Technologies Forum under the umbrella of BakuTel 2014 Conference, in December 2 to 5, 2014. During his visit to Buenos Aires, Minister Abbasov signed a framework agreement with his Argentinian counterparts to further explore bilateral cooperation on the use of outer space vehicles and satellites for peaceful purposes between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Argentina.
Minister Ali Abbasov also had a meeting with the Executive Director of INVAP, Argentina’s leading Cutting Edge Technology company, which presented its interest and potential projects that could be implemented in Azerbaijan.
According to the press release of the Ministry of Communications in Azerbaijan, minister Ali Abbasov also had a meeting with the President of the National Atomic Energy Commission of Argentina (CONEA), who provided detailed information on the development of nuclear and atomic technologies for peaceful purposes. This meeting was held in the center of Argentinian Government-owned telecommunications corporation (ARSAT), in Buenos Aires and also the leaders of the company expressed their high interest to build greater cooperation ties with Azercosmos OJSC and exchange products on satellite technology based on reciprocity practices. 
Minster Ali Abbasov, accompanied by Amb. Mammad Ahmadzadeh in Argentina, held another bilateral meeting with Minister Lino Barañao, Ph.D., Argentinian Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation. Minister Barañao has visited Baku in 2013, and has been impressed with the great progress made by Azerbaijan in the areas of Technology Innovation, Telecommunications and Research. He was very interested to establish high levels of cooperation with the government of President Aliyev in the areas of manufacturing and knowledge based products. 
Mr. Barañao, suggested that since the two countries pay a special importance to innovative technologies, it would be very beneficial to launch bilateral high technology projects in the future. In the upcoming BakuTel 2014, Argentina and Azerbaijan are expected to forge their bilateral ties in the areas of technological innovation and telecommunication; additionally large companies from Buenos Aires are expected to have greater participation in the upcoming major Telecommunication Conference of Baku.