Azerbaijani Experts on Detention of Ulyukayev

The sensational detention of the Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Alexei Ulyukayev for a bribe has caused a resonance in Azerbaijan.

The expert Natig Jafarli believes that this may be due to a conflict between Ulyukaev and the leadership of the Central Bank of Russia. So, Ulyukayev was a supporter of liberal reforms and criticized the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of the Russian Federation for their financial policies.

Commenting the happened for Turan, Jafarli said Ulyukayev had serious differences with the other members of the government and was trying to achieve the implementation of programs that promote economic growth. However, the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank pursued very conservative monetary and fiscal policies.

With regard to the problem of corruption among the ruling elite of Russia, this problem is no longer a surprise and it is commonplace.

"If millions of rubles are found in the apartment of a deputy governor, and if a police colonel is found 8 billion rubles, then what is 2 million dollars for the minister?" the expert said.

This scandal will have a negative impact on the investment climate in Russia, which is not good even without that. However, in this case, the negative is not connected with the fact of corruption, but with the elimination of a minister known as a supporter of the liberal line, he said.

Comparing the situation in Russia and Azerbaijan on the issue of corruption, Jafarli said that in Azerbaijan the volume of business and the number of participants is less. “Our cash flows are controlled by a small group of individuals and government officials and virtually no independent players. Despite the new law, officials do not declare their income. However, this does not mean that in this narrow range similar scandals and arrests are not possible,” said Jafarli.

Another famous economist, Gubad Ibadoglu also believes that there is a possible political aspect in Ulyukayev’s arrest. “If so, what happened is Putin's campaign against those who hinder his economic line,”  Gubadoglu told Turan.

Comparing the situation in the two countries, the expert noted that in Azerbaijan only low-level officials and entrepreneurs are arrested. True, the Ministers of Economy and Health Care were arrested in 2005, but the reasons were political, even though they had been convicted of corruption.

“In Azerbaijan, the fight against corruption is conducted at a small and medium bureaucratic level,” he said.

He also sharply criticized the fact that the officials do not declare their income and assets.

 At present, there is a worldwide main stream of fight against corruption and for revenue transparency. Unfortunately, in Azerbaijan revenues are still not declared. The Azerbaijani authorities have to decide this question.

While this is not done, it is hard to believe in the fight against corruption. The current random steps only give the appearance of such a struggle, the economist said.

“Beginning with the head of state, up to a simple clerk, everyone should declare their income and property both when hired and for the period of their work,” he stressed. -03B-

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