Azerbaijan has been enjoying a huge boost in revenues from its oil and gas

exports, thanks to a deal it made with the European Union last year amid

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting sanctions.

According to the latest data from Azerbaijan’s State Customs Committee, the

country earned $33.6 billion solely from oil and gas exports in the first 11

months of 2022, which is 2.2 times greater than revenues for the same period of


The same data reaffirmed the Azerbaijani economy’s overwhelming

dependence on oil and gas revenues, which amounted to 92.6 percent of the

country’s total revenues in that period.

Azerbaijan is apparently reaping the benefits of the energy deal it inked with the

EU in July. Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the EU sought to reduce

its reliance on Russian gas and signed an agreement with Azerbaijan that was to

see the latter eventually double the flow of its gas to Europe. According to the

document, Azerbaijan is expected to ramp up exports to Europe via the

Southern Gas Corridor to 20 billion cubic meters annually by 2027.

“The EU is opening a new chapter in our energy cooperation with Azerbaijan, a

key partner in our efforts to move away from Russian fossil fuels,” European

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in Baku at the time. (This

political intention was later undercut, however, by Azerbaijan’s purchase of

Russian gas to cover its own domestic needs this winter.)

Meanwhile, the list of buyers of Azerbaijani gas keeps growing. Serbia last

year started building a pipeline for Azerbaijani gas under a cooperation

agreement signed in June. Construction is set to finish in the last quarter of


Additionally, Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR signed an agreement with

a Romania’s Romgaz S.A. in December, which stipulated the export of 300

million cubic meters of Azerbaijani gas to Romania from January 1.

Azerbaijan’s political opposition and civil society have long argued that the oil

and gas wealth does not translate into higher social welfare for ordinary

Azerbaijanis and provides fodder for corruption.

Consumer prices rose 13.8 percent in the first 11 months of 2022, according to

the State Statistics Committee. That is a sharp uptick from the 6.2 percent

registered the year before.