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Staff nationalization strategy in oil and gas industry

Release date:
5 December 2018
"By the end of the year, foreign oil and gas companies staff in Azerbaijan will be 90% nationalized"R. Abdullayev

A report meeting dedicated to the 5th anniversary of the Staff Nationalization Program in the oil and gas industry of Azerbaijan took place on December 5, 2018. Rovnag Abdullayev, President of SOCAR, Parviz Shahbazov, Minister of Energy, Sahil Babayev, Minister of Labor and Social Protection, Vusal Huseynov, Head of State Migration Service, Gary Jones, BP’s Regional President for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey and other officials attended the event.


The participants watched Success Stories, a film about the Staff Nationalization Program’s achievements.  


In 2013, on instructions given by President Ilham Aliyev of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the nationalization of the oil and gas industry staff and the formation of knowledge, skills and professional integrity bases for the sector were identified as the priorities. During the past period, SOCAR, in close cooperation with the governmental agencies and relevant executive authorities of Azerbaijan, has undertaken a large-scale activity aimed at nationalizing the oil and gas industry staff and focused on training of specialists involved in oil and gas operations in Azerbaijan. The training courses were organized to gradually replace the foreign personnel involved in the country’s oil and gas projects with national resources. The Baku High Oil School, as well as five training centers that meet international standards, have been established to educate high-skilled specialists and professional workforce. The nationalization program is implemented in accordance with the adopted procedures and projects. 


         Addressing the meeting, Rovnag Abdullayev, President of SOCAR said: “Today we are reporting to the President of Azerbaijan, the author of the staff nationalization program, who has been keeping focus on this issue in the past five years, that joint efforts by the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, the State Migration Service and SOCAR, have already given its results. The oil and gas companies operating in Azerbaijan were highly committed to the staff nationalization plans. BP Azerbaijan and its contractors and subcontractors, who had 77% nationalized staff in 2013, raised this indication to 90% by the end of 2018.”  


       Gary Jones, BP’s Regional President for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, said: “We are proud to have achieved this target in cooperation with the Government, SOCAR and other co-venturers. This is part of our long-term strategy and commitment to enhancing nationalization of staff and development of workforce involved in our operations in Azerbaijan. We are pleased to see the successful outcome of our joint efforts and are committed to further cooperation to help Azerbaijan become a regional human resources hub for the oil and gas industry.”


  Then Parviz Shahbazov, Minister of Energy, Sahil Babayev, Minister of Labor and Social Protection, Vusal Huseynov, head of State Migration Service addressed the event. They said the oil and gas companies operating in Azerbaijan have achieved a high rate in their staff nationalization, and this work will make the presence of local experts in the transnational oil and gas companies more effective and create a new labor market for improvement of population's employment.


Facts and figure about nationalization in BP Azerbaijan 

Notes to editors:


In accordance with the instruction of the country's leadership, SOCAR and BP, as operator of the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli and Shah Deniz projects,  signed a protocol on five-year staff nationalization plans (2014-2018) on November 14, 2013. SOCAR  also signed a memorandum of cooperation with the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection on February 11, 2014 to make the implementation of staff nationalization plans more efficient.In order to improve the efficiency of staff nationalization and to coordinate the work in this field, by the resolution (No124) of the Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan dated March 14, 2016, SOCAR joined the Commission on labor migration quota.


BP Azerbaijan had 58% nationalized staff in 2005, this reached 77% in 2013, 89% in 2017 and 90% in 2018.


Shah Deniz-2, the new largest project of Azerbaijan’s oil and gas industry, targeted 30-50% nationalization for engineering technical staff and 70% for workforce, but achieved 91% nationalization of its staff.


BP currently has more than 2550 Azerbaijani national employees including:

  • 1150 national professionals working at offshore and onshore sites;
  • 350 senior level leaders;
  • 510 mid-level leaders;Seven Azerbaijani national members of the Regional Leadership Team
  • ;500 female national employees
  • ;200 mid- and senior level female leaders;
  • 300 Challengers recruited in Azerbaijan since 2013 - BP's Challenge programme attracts talented graduates and develops their technical skills.


Since 2013 SOCAR and BP have helped hundreds of national students to receive higher education in Western universities. 


Further information:


SOCAR Public Relations and Event Management

Telephone: (+994 12) 521 02 74; press@socar.az

Tamam Bayatly at BP’s Press Office in Baku.Telephone: (+994 12) 525 5895;E-mail: bayatltf@bp.com