The Sweet Gold project which bp and its co-venturers launched in 2017 has been successfully completed significantly contributing to the communities’ sustainable livelihood generation through creating family beekeeping businesses and the first ever honey forest in the country.
The project, which is bp’s and its co-venturers’ major social investment initiative, has also equipped the targeted community members with required resources and skills to build and run their businesses.
Today the Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources Mukhtar Babayev and senior bp officials visited the Samukh district to see firsthand the area where 110 000 nectar trees have been planted as part of the project and meeting some of the families who have built sustainable honey businesses. During the visit Minister Babayev and bp officials also contributed to the “Green Marathon” campaign planting 2000 nectar trees for the Sweet Gold project together with representatives of local authorities and a large group of volunteers.
“We are proud to be bringing tangible and sustainable benefits for the people in the communities where we operate, said Bakhtiyar Aslanbayli, bp’s Vice President Middle East and Caspian, Communications and Advocacy, “The Sweet Gold project has fully met its objectives by opening income opportunities and building new capabilities in the rural communities. We are also proud that the project has significantly contributed to the tree planting and foresting efforts in the country. We believe the nectar tree forest created as part of the project will benefit the communities for a long time both as a source of bee-breeding and a major contributor to the green nature and clean environment.”
What is Sweet Gold?
The project initially started in March 2017 as a pilot one-year initiative covering 100 community members from the Yevlakh, Goranboy, Samukh and Shamkir districts by providing equipment, training and continuous consultancy in beekeeping and small farming.
The project was then expanded to cover two more districts - Agstafa and Tovuz, along the bp-operated pipelines. This new phase was for three years aiming to benefit additional over 400 community members and to achieve the planting of over 100,000 nectar trees for bee-breeding.
Notes to Editors
Over the past 28 years bp and its co-venturers have supported a large number of major social investment projects. These have included educational and capacity-building programmes, building skills and capabilities in local communities, improving access to social infrastructure in communities, supporting local enterprises through provision of access to finance and training, support for cultural legacy and sport, as well as technical assistance to public institutions.
In 2020, bp and the co-venturers in bp-operated joint ventures spent more than $3.2 million in Azerbaijan on social investment projects.
In addition, in 2020 bp alone invested over $4.2 million in the country through various social projects.
This includes bp’s recent 3 million-dollar support to the country in its fight to relieve the COVID-19 pandemic situation. This contribution was specifically spent to purchase overseas biochemical and PCR laboratories, bring them to the country and install in TABIB’s New Clinics, also to purchase and bring to the country 100,000 PCR testing sets and associated consumables/reagents and 3 isolation capsules for exceptionally contagious cases. The donation was meant to help enhance the country’s capability to effectively diagnose and treat COVID-19 cases in particular and strengthen the country’s healthcare services in general. In addition, there was a further over 100,000 AZN donation for the same purpose by bp’s employees in Azerbaijan and a 10,000 dollar-worth Castrol lubricants donation by bp Turkey Lubricants meant for TABIB ambulances.
In total, to date bp and the co-venturers in bp-operated joint ventures have invested more than $90 million through social development programmes in Azerbaijan.
For more information about bp and co-venturers’ social investment projects please visit bp Azerbaijan site at www.bp.com/azerbaijan
Tamam Bayatly at bp’s Press Office in Baku.
Telephone: (+994 12) 525 58 95