AIOC opens a new school in Umid

5 October 2005

The Azerbaijan International Operating Company (AIOC) today inaugurated a newly-built school in the Umid settlement of the Garadagh district for refugee and IDP (internally displaced persons) communities. This project is part of AIOC’s Sangachal Terminal Expansion Programme (STEP) support for local communities.

The STEP has undertaken this initiative within the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) project’s major Human Development Programme aimed at community development around the Sangachal Terminal.

The parties to the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) Production Sharing Agreement are : BP (operator - 34.1%), Unocal (10.3%), SOCAR (10%), INPEX (10.,0%), Statoil (8,6%), ExxonMobil (8%), TPAO (6.8%), Devon (5.6%), Itochu (3.9%), Amerada Hess (2.7%).

The project has been funded by the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) Project and its total cost is $60 000. The contractors for this school construction project have been the World Vision Azerbaijan, who has provided technical assistance and supervision, and the local construction company Kirs.

The project has mainly employed Umid residents for construction activities. 

Construction works for the school commenced in April 2005 and were completed in September. The facility covers 290 square metres of area and it will be used to teach some 230 pupils aged from 6 to 16 years. The school building has seven classrooms and a bathroom facility. In addition, there is a 200 square metre play area outside the building. 

Jacobus Nieuwenhuijze, Sangachal Terminal Expansion Project Director, said: “STEP has been closely working with its neighbours through its various human development programmes since the early stages of our construction activities. We are particularly pleased to be able to implement community development projects in the neighbouring refugee settlement Umid and these, we believe, are already making visible changes to the lives of refugee families and their children. The success of this project is not only an education facility but a building that represents hope for the future of this refugee community. We are proud to be a part of this future.”

Notes to Editors:

BP together with its partners in the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli, Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan, and Shah Deniz projects, is implementing world-class oil and gas development and export projects in the region. These projects present a great opportunity to make a positive difference to the people of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey.

As part of our efforts to achieve this, we and our partners in these projects will spend around $40 million between now and the end of 2006 on social and community projects. Our social investment project selection process is open and transparent, and is based on such criteria as impact, sustainability and active community involvement. The overall allocation of funds by individual projects is as follows: BTC - all three countries; SCP - Azerbaijan and Georgia, and ACG – Azerbaijan and some in Georgia, and Shah Deniz - Azerbaijan.

In addition to the social and environmental investment activities we undertake jointly with our partners, we have also funds for direct 100% BP projects. We use these (a) to support social and community activities in those regions of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey unaffected by our operations, and (b) to fund national-level impact or pilot projects in private sector support and civil society development.

We will continue to work closely will all our stakeholders toward creating sustainable benefits in the communities where we operate.


For further information please contact:
Tamam Bayatly, BP Baku Press office, telephone:      994 (0) 12 599 4557