Azerbaijan

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GENERAL INFORMATION

 

Population - Local time - Languages - Religion - Political context - Climate - Tourism - Food


Population


Total population (millions): 8.3
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Urban population: 50%
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Average annual population growth: 0.6%
Source : World Bank - World Development Indicators

Surface area (km▓) : 86,600


Population origin

Origin of the population% Of the population
Azerbaijani89,8 %
Daghestani 3.1
Armenian 2.3
Russian 2.2
Lezghian2
Ukrainian 0.6



Main Cities Population
Baku 1 132 800
Gandja 305 600
Sumgait 266 600
Mingacevir 95 300
Qarašuxur 73 700
Ali Bayramli 68 700



Local time

It is  %T:%M %A  in Baku (GMT+4 in winter, GMT+5 in summer).
Summer time from March to October



Languages
Official language: Azerbaidjani
Business Languages: Russian and English.

Free translation tools

Azersoft
Free English-Azeri Dictionary

Systran
Free English-Russian-English translator of texts and web pages





Religion
Religious practises : Shiite Muslims 65%
Sunni Muslims 28%
Christians orthodox 5%
Others 2%.


Political context

Azerbaijan is a republic with limited parliamentary democracy where President enjoys immense powers. Azerbaijan (official name: Republic of Azerbaijan) declared its independence from the former Soviet Union in August 1991.
President is the chief of the state and is elected by popular vote for a five-year term. President holds the executive powers. President appoints the P rime minister (who is the head of the government) and the Council of Ministers, to be confirmed by the National Assembly.
The legislature is unicameral in Azerbaijan. The parliament called National Assembly has 125 seats with its members being elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms. However, the National Assembly has been historically a weak body with little real influence. Azerbaijan has a strong presidential system in which the legislative and judicial branches have only limited independence. The people of Azerbaijan have very limited political rights.
The judiciary in the country does not work independently and is corrupt and inefficient. The constitution of 1995 is the main source of the law, with country's legal system based on civil law system. The judicial language of Azerbaijan is Azerbaijani.
Azerbaijan is not ruled by law. Judiciary does not guarantee an impartial trial to a foreign national. Azerbaijan faces a high degree of corruption. In fact, corruption is deeply entrenched throughout society with government officials rarely held accountable for engaging in corrupt practices. Significant parts of the economy are in the hands of a small corrupt elite, which severely limits equality of opportunity.


Major political parties

The main political parties are: NAP (New Azerbaijan Party), CPA (Communist Party of Azerbaijan), PFP (Popular Front Party), CSP (Civic Solidarity Party), SDP ( Social Democratic Party of Azerbaijan). Opposition parties in Azerbaijan regularly factionalize and form new parties.


Major political leaders

President: Ilham ALIYEV (since October 2003, took over from his father) -NAP
Prime Minister: Artur RASIZADE (since November 2003) -NAP


Next political election dates

Presidential: October 2008
National Assembly: November 2010




Climate

 

 

 


Tourism


Number of visitors in Azerbaijan 2004 2005 2006 World rank
Number of visitors (1000) 1,349 1,177 ..
Source : World Tourisme Organization, data available in November 2005

 

Tourist sites
The places of interest of Baku, the capital, are the Taghiyeu Historic museum, the Maiden's tower, the old city centre "Ichari Shahar", the Nizami museum on the Fountain Place and the Palace of the Government.

For more information about tourism in Azerbaijan , check out the following web site(s) :
Azerba´jan Ministry of Tourism



Food


Traditional dishes
The Azerbaidjani food has been influenced by the recipes of Turkey and Central Asia.
Among the specialties of the country, we can list:
Plov: meat-based dish, with rice and pine kernels.
Kebabs: spicy lamb-based grills.
Piti: mutton-based soup with chickpeas cooked in a terracotta jar.
Dogva: spinach-based soup, with rice and beef cuts with a yoghurt sauce on top.
The very famous Azerbaidjani caviar, from the Caspian Sea.
The black tea, very renowned in Azerbaidjan.


Food-related taboos
Muslims cannot eat pork in Azerbaidjan.

Last modified on December 2006

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