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Great achievements have been made in gas industry

Interview with  Director General of Azerigaz Akbar Hajiyev

Q: What changes did happen in Azerbaijan`s gas industry in 2014 amid the country`s rapid development?

A: Great achievements have been made under the State Program on socio-economic development of districts of the Republic of Azerbaijan in 2014-2018 and the State Program on the socio-economic development of Baku and suburban areas in 2014-2016.

Our focus was ensuring supply of gas to the population and other consumers, reconstructing gas supply system, and supplying gas to residential areas. Throughout last year 58 residential areas in 25 regions were supplied with gas.

As a result of work to ensure continuous supply of quality natural gas to consumers and strengthen the consumer base, the number of consumers supplied with natural gas made 1,732,266 as for January 1, 2015. Some 22,262 of the total number of consumers are non-population consumers. The number of population consumers hs grown in comparison with previous years as a result of work to ensure supply of gas to Baku, Absheron, Sumgayit and the country`s regions.

The expanded the geography of installation of smart card type meters.

Q: What is being done to ensure continuous supply of quality natural gas in the country in compliance with international standards?

A: One of the main priorities of Azerigaz is ensuring continuous and normal supply of gas to consumers. We have very good achievements on this front. The situation is good with respect to collection of gas fees from consumers.  The level of collection of fees has increased. Last year, Azerigaz sold a total of 2, 473,576,668 cubic metres of gas to consumers, and collected 101.1 percent of funds. This is 272,005,040 cubic metres more than in 2013.

Azerigaz carried out important reforms and introduced some innovations with the aim of dealing with problems that can arise during the installation and use of smart card type gas meters. We have changed all old gas metres with smart card type metres. In December of 2014, some 49,673 meters of pipes were built, 136 gas regulators were installed. In general in January-December of the past year, 366,390 metres of gas pipes were laid out, and 1,276 gas regulators were installed. Some 1436,56 km of new gas pipelines were constructed for ensuring gas supply to residential areas. Some 353,9 km of pipelines was reconstructed.

Thus, Ilham Aliyev’s past 10-years activity has resulted in approaching 100 percent in the gasification of the country, which is one of the important indicators of the overall socio-economic development. Last year we introduced new software as the volume of payments for gas sharply rose.

Azerigaz made considerable achievements in supplying gas to multi-storey buildings.

Q: What is the company doing to prevent violation of gas consuming rules?

A: Measures continue to prevent the violation of gas consuming rules. A total of 2351 relevant acts were drawn against those who violated rules of gas consuming. Some 3182 consumers were fined for consuming gas without registration. The total material damage caused by these violations made 913,920 manats.

In 2014, “104 gas repair” and “185 hot line” received a total of 70,238 calls. The fulfillment of all applications was supervised. The company has launched work to set up Call Center in order to improve the quality of service, remove negative cases and tighten control over the execution of work. This will pave the way for the improvement of services offers to consumers to international standards.

Q: What is done to improve working conditions of your employees?

A: Considerable work has been done to ensure working conditions in our sector. New administrative buildings were constructed for gas stations in Binaqadi, Khatai, Sabunchu, Şəmkir, Khachmaz, Astara, Daşkesen, Ujar, Gakh, Yardımlı, Bilasuvar, Ismayıllı and Shirvan. Buildings of some institutions under the company have been repaired.

Special attention has been paid to improving working conditions of employees of Azerigaz, preserving their labor and health, and increasing their knowledge and skills. We carry out assessment of skills and knowledge of our engineers and technical employees. As a result of this work, 648 out of 701 employees have already passed the assessment test, with 618 of them receiving positive feedbacks.

 We carry out various environmental monitorings, inspect the fulfillment of ecological work in gas consumption areas. Last November was announced the month of safe consumption of gas in connection with the towing possibility of negative cases with the arrival of winter.

Last September, Turkish Standard Institute carried out an audit of how Azerigaz applies international standards in its work.

Q: What is the exact number of gas consumers in the country? Please highlight measures to improve the quality of services offered to consumers?

A: In 2014, ASAN xidmet centers number 1, 2, 3 and 4 in Baku received 88,913 applications, and the fulfillment of all of them was provided. We launched technical monitorings in houses of consumers. The company creased a department for services to gas pipelines and devices. It employs a total of 153 people who inspect illegal use of gas consumption, and supervise the use of gas metres and gas devices in houses and apartments.

In general, between 2009-2014, a total of 26642,4 km long gas pipelines were built in the country, 8082,5 km long pipelines were repaired, 721 residential areas were supplied with gas. The total number of gas consumers in the country is 1,730,000,000 people.