Where is Azerbaijan located?

What countries border Azerbaijan?

Azerbaijan Weather

What is the current weather in Azerbaijan?

Azerbaijan Facts and Culture

What is Azerbaijan famous for?

  • Cultural Attributes: The attitude of Azeris as a nation has changed over the years. Conditioned to view themselves as Soviets after World... More
  • Family: Azeris value family over the individual and family needs come first. Men are protective of the women in the family.... More
  • Personal Apperance: Men and women generally wear Western clothing. However, rural women sometimes wear traditional clothing that includes a long, pleated skirt,... More
  • Recreation: Azerbaijanis enjoy chess, watching tv, and playing sports, especially football (soccer) and wrestling. More
  • Diet: Azeris are proud of their cuisine. The most popular Azeri dish, pilau, is made of rice that has been steamed... More
  • Food and Recipes: People usually eat three meals a day. For breakfast, tea with bread and butter, cheese, or marmalade is common. Dinner,... More
  • Visiting: Visiting relatives or friends is popular in Azerbaijan. Hospitality is part of the culture. Friends and family visit without prior... More
  • Dating: Dating in the Western sense is not common in Azerbaijan. If urban men and women go out, their relationship is... More

Azerbaijan Facts

What is the capital of Azerbaijan?

Capital Baku (Baki, Baky)
Government Type presidential republic
Currency Azerbaijani manats (AZN)
Total Area 33,436 Square Miles
86,600 Square Kilometers
Location Southwestern Asia, bordering the Caspian Sea, between Iran and Russia, with a small European portion north of the Caucasus range
Language Azerbaijani (Azeri) 89%, Russian 3%, Armenian 2%, other 6%
GDP - real growth rate -2.4%
GDP - per capita (PPP) $17,700.00 (USD)

Azerbaijan Demographics

What is the population of Azerbaijan?

Ethnic Group - note Nagorno-Karabakh, which is part of Azerbaijan on the basis of the borders recognized when the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991, was populated almost entirely by ethnic Armenians; Azerbaijan has over 80 ethnic groups
Ethnic Groups Azerbaijani 91.6%, Lezghin 2%, Russian 1.3%, Armenian 1.3%, Talysh 1.3%, other 2.4%
Language - note Russian is widely spoken
Languages Azerbaijani (Azeri) (official) 92.5%, Russian 1.4%, Armenian 1.4%, other 4.7%
Nationality Noun noun: Azerbaijani(s)

adjective: Azerbaijani
Population 10,650,239
Population Growth Rate 0.43%
Population in Major Urban Areas 2.432 million BAKU (capital)
Urban Population urban population: 57.6% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 1.38% annual rate of change

note: data include Nagorno-Karabakh
Population: Male/Female male: 5,330,233

female: 5,320,006

Azerbaijan Government

What type of government does Azerbaijan have?

Executive Branch chief of state: President Ilham ALIYEV (since 31 October 2003); First Vice President Mehriban ALIYEVA (since 21 February 2017)

head of government: Prime Minister Ali ASADOV (since 8 October 2019); First Deputy Prime Minister Yaqub EYYUBOV (since 13 February 2003)

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president and confirmed by the National Assembly

elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds (if needed) for a 7-year term; a single individual is eligible for unlimited terms; election last held on 7 February 2024 (next to be held in 2031); prime minister and first deputy prime minister appointed by the president and confirmed by the National Assembly; note - a constitutional amendment approved in a September 2016 referendum extended the presidential term from 5 to 7 years; a separate constitutional amendment approved in the same referendum also introduced the post of first vice president and additional vice-presidents, who are directly appointed by the president; however, no additional vice presidents have been appointed since the constitutional amendment was passed

election results:

2024: Ilham ALIYEV reelected president; percent of vote - Ilham ALIYEV (YAP) 92.1%, Zahid ORUJ (independent) 2.2%

2018: Ilham ALIYEV reelected president in first round; percent of vote - Ilham ALIYEV (YAP) 86%, Zahid ORUJ (independent) 3.1%, other 10.9%

note: OSCE observers noted shortcomings in the election, including a restrictive political environment, limits on fundamental freedoms, a lack of genuine competition, and ballot box stuffing
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Citizenship citizenship by birth: yes

citizenship by descent only: yes

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
National Holiday Republic Day (founding of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan), 28 May (1918)
Constitution history: several previous; latest adopted 12 November 1995

amendments: proposed by the president of the republic or by at least 63 members of the National Assembly; passage requires at least 95 votes of Assembly members in two separate readings of the draft amendment six months apart and requires presidential approval after each of the two Assembly votes, followed by presidential signature; constitutional articles on the authority, sovereignty, and unity of the people cannot be amended; amended 2002, 2009, 2016
Independence 30 August 1991 (declared from the Soviet Union); 18 October 1991 (adopted by the Supreme Council of Azerbaijan)

Azerbaijan Video

YouTube: Unesco The Art of Azerbaijani Ashiq

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Azerbaijan Geography

What environmental issues does Azerbaijan have?

Overview The Republic of Azerbaijan is a country of great physical variety and complicated boundaries. Its territory of 33,774 square miles includes one autonomous region, Nagorno Karabakh (currently occupied by Armenian forces); one autonomous republic, Nakhchivan, which is separated from Azerbaijan proper by the Zangezur Region of Armenia; and several clusters of small islands in the Caspian Sea. Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital, is situated on the northern shore of the Bay of Baku on the Apsheron Peninsula, which juts into the Caspian Sea.

Azerbaijan can be thought of as a dry trough between wetter mountain ranges. The Greater Caucasus Mountains, running southeastward along the northern border, rise in places to over 14,000 feet. The Lesser Caucasus and Talysh Mountains, somewhat lower in elevation, parallel them along the southern border. Deep and abrupt river valleys carve the rugged mountain terrain. Forests cover much of the middle elevations. The semiarid Kura Depression between these ranges occupies about half of the country. Toward the Caspian Sea coast, this mostly flat depression dips below the world sea level. The landscapes around Baku and to the south are dry and brown. As one travels northwest toward the Greater Caucasus, however, eroded hills give way to green hills and finally, in most seasons, to snow-capped mountains.

The country’s rivers flow from Georgia, Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan’s mountains. Most join to form the Kura‑Aras river system, which empties into the Caspian Sea about 80 miles south of Baku. The Caspian is salty and subject to substantial changes in water level. Coastal flooding in the mid‑1990s subsided several years later. Sandy beaches border much of the coastline. Some 250 lakes and several large reservoirs dot parts of Azerbaijan. Many ephemeral lakes and ponds form during rainy periods.

The country’s vegetation is similarly varied, with sparse, low‑growing plants in the semi-arid lowlands; forests (mostly deciduous and covering about 11% of the land areas) in the mountains along the upper Kura River and northernmost coast; and meadows and alpine tundra on the highest mountains. Marshlands have formed where water collects in the lowlands.

Fourteen nature reserves were established to protect samples of the country’s flora and fauna. The Kizil-Agach Reserve, the largest at 217,000 acres, includes extensive wetlands on the southern coast. Half a million water birds, among them several thousand flamingos, winter here. Persian gazelles roam the Sirvan Reserve, farther north. Other reserves, such as Ismailly, in the Greater Caucasus Mountains, protect dense, diverse forests and rare trees, as well as other wildlife. Permission is required to enter the nature reserves.

Parts of Azerbaijan are subject to earthquakes, particularly the southern slope of the Greater Caucasus in the Sheki‑Shemakha Region and the southern part of the Lesser Caucasus adjoining the Aras River.
Climate The climate generally follows the topography, temperatures falling and precipitation rising with increasing elevation, although the southeastern corner of Azerbaijan, including its lowlands, is the wettest part of the country. The mean July temperature in the lowlands is 77°-81°F, with temperatures sometimes exceeding 100°F in Baku. The average January temperature in the lowlands is 32°-37°F. Highland temperatures average around 40°F in July and below 14°F in January. Annual precipitation averages less than 11 inches along most of the coast and in most of the Kura Depression; 12-35 inches in the foothills and mid-altitude highlands; 39-51 inches along the southern slopes of the Greater Caucasus, and 47-71 inches in the southeastern Lenkoran Region. These climatic variations produce wet subtropical conditions in the Lenkoran lowlands where citrus fruits are grown; temperate semidesert on the Apsheron Peninsula and Kura lowlands; temperate moist conditions at middle elevations; and subalpine and alpine environments at the highest. Baku is marked by mild winters and hot summers. Rain can be fairly frequent, though usually light, in fall and winter, but is infrequent in the summer. In winter, the city is subject to severe north or northwest winds, but snow is infrequent.
Border Countries Armenia (with Azerbaijan-proper) 566 km, Armenia (with Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave) 221 km, Georgia 322 km, Iran (with Azerbaijan-proper) 432 km, Iran (with Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave) 179 km, Russia 284 km, Turkey 9 km
Environment - Current Issues Local scientists consider the Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) (including Baku and Sumqayit) and the Caspian Sea to be the ecologically most devastated area in the world because of severe air, soil, and water pollution; soil pollution results from oil spills, from the use of DDT as a pesticide, and from toxic defoliants used in the production of cotton
Environment - International Agreements Party To: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Terrain Large, flat Kur-Araz Ovaligi (Kura-Araks Lowland) (much of it below sea level) with Great Caucasus Mountains to the north, Qarabag Yaylasi (Karabakh Upland) in the west; Baku lies on Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) that juts into the Caspian Sea

Azerbaijan Economy

How big is the Azerbaijan economy?

Economic Overview Prior to the decline in global oil prices since 2014, Azerbaijan's high economic growth was attributable to rising energy exports and to some non-export sectors. Oil exports through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline, the Baku-Novorossiysk, and the Baku-Supsa Pipelines remain the main economic driver, but efforts to boost Azerbaijan's gas production are underway. The expected completion of the geopolitically important Southern Gas Corridor (SGC) between Azerbaijan and Europe will open up another source of revenue from gas exports. First gas to Turkey through the SGC is expected in 2018 with project completion expected by 2020-21.

Declining oil prices caused a 3.1% contraction in GDP in 2016, and a 0.8% decline in 2017, highlighted by a sharp reduction in the construction sector. The economic decline was accompanied by higher inflation, a weakened banking sector, and two sharp currency devaluations in 2015. Azerbaijan’s financial sector continued to struggle. In May 2017, Baku allowed the majority state-owned International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA), the nation’s largest bank, to default on some of its outstanding debt and file for restructuring in Azerbaijani courts; IBA also filed in US and UK bankruptcy courts to have its restructuring recognized in their respective jurisdictions.

Azerbaijan has made limited progress with market-based economic reforms. Pervasive public and private sector corruption and structural economic inefficiencies remain a drag on long-term growth, particularly in non-energy sectors. The government has, however, made efforts to combat corruption, particularly in customs and government services. Several other obstacles impede Azerbaijan's economic progress, including the need for more foreign investment in the non-energy sector and the continuing conflict with Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. While trade with Russia and the other former Soviet republics remains important, Azerbaijan has expanded trade with Turkey and Europe and is seeking new markets for non-oil/gas exports - mainly in the agricultural sector - with Gulf Cooperation Council member countries, the US, and others. It is also improving Baku airport and the Caspian Sea port of Alat for use as a regional transportation and logistics hub.

Long-term prospects depend on world oil prices, Azerbaijan's ability to develop export routes for its growing gas production, and its ability to improve the business environment and diversify the economy. In late 2016, the president approved a strategic roadmap for economic reforms that identified key non-energy segments of the economy for development, such as agriculture, logistics, information technology, and tourism. In October 2017, the long-awaited Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, stretching from the Azerbaijani capital to Kars in north-eastern Turkey, began limited service.
Industries Petroleum and petroleum products, natural gas, oilfield equipment; steel, iron ore; cement; chemicals and petrochemicals; textiles
Currency Name and Code Azerbaijani manats (AZN)
Export Partners Italy 26.3%, Germany 13.3%, Indonesia 7%, France 6.9%, Czech Republic 6%
Import Partners Russia 19.9%, Turkey 16.5%, UK 8.6%, Germany 6.6%, Italy 6.3%, United States 4.1%

Azerbaijan News and Current Events

What current events are happening in Azerbaijan?
Source: Google News

Azerbaijan Travel Information

What makes Azerbaijan a unique country to travel to?

Country Description

Azerbaijan is a constitutional republic with a developing economy. Western-style amenities are found in the capital, Baku, but infrastructure and access to goods and services outside the city, while improving, are less well developed.


Most of the crime in Baku affects local residents, with burglary and assault being the most common crimes. Foreigners are at greater risk in areas attracting large crowds or in very isolated areas. Although not common, petty theft and assault against foreign citizens do occur in Baku. Pick-pockets tend to frequent tourist sites, public transportation (especially minibusses), and pedestrian streets or large public squares where people congregate. Travelers should be mindful of their wallets, purses, and computer bags, as they make for tempting targets.

Avoid traveling alone at night. Late-night targeted attacks against lone males, while not common, are the most common crimes committed against foreigners; these usually involve victims who have been drinking.

There have been several reports from individuals who have been victims of crimes occurring late at night in bars frequented by Westerners. The crime occurs when a male patron is approached by a young woman who asks the individual to buy her a drink; after buying the drink and talking for a while, the customer is presented with an exorbitant bill. When the customer protests, he is approached by several men, detained, and forced to pay the full amount of the bill under threat of physical violence.

You should be very cautious about allowing unknown people to enter your hotel room or apartment.

Several Western women have reported incidents of unwanted male attention, including groping and other offensive behavior while walking on the streets alone or with only female companions. Travelers should remain alert when visiting tourist areas in Baku, such as Fountain Square and the Maiden’s Tower. We recommend that you avoid traveling alone in these areas after nightfall.

There have been reports of vehicle break-ins at regional tourist sites outside Baku. Whenever possible, vehicles should be parked in guarded or controlled parking lots, and valuables should never be left in plain sight.

There are instances of U.S. citizens being asked by new Internet friends to help pay a “return guarantee fee” to the Azerbaijani Immigration Service before a short trip abroad. There is no such law requiring Azerbaijani citizens to post a deposit for foreign travel, and the Internet friends were later determined to have fraudulent Azerbaijani identification cards. Please see this website for information about avoiding Internet financial scams.

Don’t buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. Not only are the bootlegs illegal to bring back into the United States, but purchasing them may also be against local law.


Azerbaijani (Azeri) (official) 92.5%, Russian 1.4%, Armenian 1.4%, other 4.7%

Medical Facilities and Health Information

There is one Western-type medical clinic operating in Baku, run by International SOS, which provides 24-hour care of quality comparable to that in Western countries. It is adequate for urgent care and minor acute medical problems only. Surgeries, unless urgent for life-saving problems, are not advisable here. There is often a shortage of basic medical supplies, including disposable needles and vaccines. Bring adequate amounts of prescription medicines for the duration of your visit, as pharmacies often do not carry all brands or doses.

Safety and Security

In light of ongoing global and regional threats against the United States and foreign interests, the U.S. embassy has recently released several Emergency Messages to U.S. citizens advising them to remain vigilant, particularly in public places associated with Western and Israeli communities. In January 2012, the Azerbaijani National Security Ministry disrupted a terrorist plot, reportedly backed by Iran, to attack prominent foreigners in Baku.

You should avoid travel to the region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding occupied areas, as well as regions along the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian positions. Because of the existing state of hostilities, we cannot offer consular services to U.S. citizens in Nagorno-Karabakh.

U.S. citizens of Armenian ancestry considering travel to Azerbaijan should remain particularly vigilant when visiting the country, as the government of Azerbaijan has claimed it is unable to guarantee your safety. However, the U.S. Embassy is unaware of such U.S. citizen travelers recently experiencing threats to their safety based solely on their Armenian heritage or name.

Traveling to the region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding occupied areas via Armenia without the consent of the Government of Azerbaijan could make you ineligible to travel to Azerbaijan in the future.

Traffic Safety and Road Conditions

While in Azerbaijan, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. Fatalities from traffic accidents are high and continue to rise each year. The information below concerning Azerbaijan is provided for general reference only and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.

Azerbaijan is rebuilding its roadway system. Although the newer sections of the road system are a marked improvement, the older sections are poorly constructed and poorly lighted. There are unfinished road sections that are extremely dangerous due to the lack of proper construction and hazard signage.

Driving hazards, such as open manholes, debris, sinkholes, and potholes, are common in Baku. Many drivers do not pay attention to traffic regulations, signals, lane markings, pedestrians, or other drivers. Drivers often travel at extremely high speeds, and accidents are frequent and often serious. Pedestrians do not use crosswalks to cross the street and often stand in the median between lanes of traffic, even at night. Driving in Baku should be considered extremely hazardous. Outside the city, even where roads are present, conditions are similar. Roads are often in poor repair and unlighted, and they lack lane markings, traffic signs, and warnings. Many rural roads are largely unpaved.

Throughout Azerbaijan, traffic police enforce traffic laws inconsistently, and routine traffic stops are common. If stopped, drivers should have all required documents with them, including passport or local registration documents, driver’s license, vehicle registration documents, and proof of insurance. Talking on the cell phone while driving carries a fine of AZN 50 (about $64 USD). Driving under the influence carries a fine of AZN 80-100 (about $102-$128 USD) and 5 points. If you get 10 points in one year, the fine is AZN 120-150 AZN (about $153-$191 USD) and 2 years’ suspension of license.

Most taxis in Baku are neither metered nor regulated. Older Russian-produced cars used as private taxis are widely regarded as unsafe. Visitors must negotiate the fare before entering a taxi. Recently, a fleet of new, London-style taxis has been deployed in Baku. They are metered and can be found near most places catering to tourists.

Although the city of Baku has invested in new buses and the quality of its underground metro system is very good, public transportation throughout the remainder of the country remains overcrowded and poorly maintained.

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