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Friday, 10 November 2017 15:45

It is too early now to assume that the fuel era left in the past, - Jeyhun Mammadov Featured

We pay particular attention to the areas located close to the occupied districts  

 

Caspian Energy (CE): This year Azpetrol has celebrated the 20th anniversary. Which successes have you achieved up to now?

Jeyhun Mammadov, General Director at Azpetrol Ltd: To ensure high-quality customer service, Azpetrol has created the infrastructure meeting the international standards. It includes three fuel depots, the truck fleet and the network of petrol and gas stations. Besides the basic services, the Company offers additional services such as car washing, cafes, shops, motels, etc. We provide the wide range of services, including the sale of gift fuel cards, which can be a wonderful gift to any driver.

Since 2001, the Company has been providing customers with non-cash payment services, using plastic fuel cards. To date, the number of companies using our fuel cards has exceeded 6,000. We also provide the opportunity for individuals to purchase fuel cards online without leaving their homes or cars and take them from any of our filling stations immediately after sending an online application.

 

CE: This year the number of petrol and gas stations has totalled 88. Do you plan to continue expanding their number? Could you please tell about your plans and projects for 2018?

Jeyhun Mammadov: Yes, at present the Company operates 83 petrol stations and 5 gas stations, which cover the main economic zones of Azerbaijan. At the moment, active preparations are being made for commissioning the second petrol station in the Siazan district of the Republic of Azerbaijan. In 2018, the works will be completely finished.

 

CE: How much attention do you give to the quality of fuel you offer?

Jeyhun Mammadov: Traditionally, we pay great attention to the quality of fuel we offer. Diesel fuel and Ai-92 gasoline are produced at the Baku Heydar Aliyev Oil Refinery. There, the fuel undergoes all required testing and receives a quality certificate. As for Premium-Euro-5 gasoline (EN-288), it is purchased mainly from Romania and meets the European standards. It is supplied with all relevant documentation confirming the high quality of the product. During each wholesale purchase the quality of fuel is checked in specialized laboratories. Also, we take much care of the storage conditions. Preventive cleaning of all tanks is carried out on a periodic basis.

 

CE: Is the price of gasoline expected to increase in the near future?

Jeyhun Mammadov: It is very difficult to answer this question because prices for diesel fuel and A-92 gasoline are set according to decisions of the Tariff Council of the Republic of Azerbaijan. As for the price for Premium-Euro-5 gasoline (EN-288), it is formed in the European petrochemicals market and depends on such factors as oil prices, the US dollar exchange rate, transport tariffs, etc. In any case, we try, if possible, to reduce our trading margin in order to make fuel more affordable.

 

CE: What position does Azpetrol hold in terms of a sales volume?

Jeyhun Mammadov: Though the number of our filling stations comprises only about 9% of the total number of gas stations in the country, we keep the initiative of control over more than 50% of the fuel market in Azerbaijan. Having the largest network of filling stations, we hold the leading positions among the companies engaged in the retail fuel sales.

 

CE: Do you plan to expand business beyond the country? What investments and equipment are required for it?

Jeyhun Mammadov: One of the major goals of Azpetrol is to maintain its positions in the private sector of the Azerbaijani economy, as well as participate in its further development. We plan to keep improving the activity of the Company, covering the regions of the Republic, opening new working places, expanding the scope of services as well as applying advanced technologies. 

One of the priority lines of the Company’s activity is the involvement in the successful implementation of the State Program on Social-Economic Development of Regions approved by President Ilham Aliyev. In this regard the Company focused on developing its regional service structures and opening new working places.

We are aspiring to become more than a chain of filling stations where drivers buy a quality fuel. We want to be a place for comfort on people’s way where they can get rest, have good meals and drink good tea or coffee. 

Despite all this, we also do not rule out further development beyond the Republic in the foreseeable future.

 

CE: What do you think about the use of electric cars in Azerbaijan? Will Azpetrol be able to provide a charge for electric cars in addition to gasoline?

 Jeyhun Mammadov: We think positive about all innovations which will help to improve the ecology of our country. Of course Azpetrol will handle this task. We are planning to keep up with the time and ready to meet the needs of our customers using electric cars.

Though, as far as the ecology is concerned, it should be noted that 80% and 20% of electricity supplied to the Republic comes from thermal and water plants respectively. In other words, 80% of energy consumed by an electric car in Azerbaijan is generated through transformation of the chemical energy of fuel into a thermal energy in the course of combustion, which means the combustion of the same fuel again. The situation is similar in other countries as well. For now there are very few countries which can boast about generation of energy out of alternative sources. Then what is the difference between consuming the fuel in the thermal plan or in the engine of the vehicle? Therefore, we think it is too early now to assume that the fuel era left in the past. 

 

CE: Do you plan to upgrade local operating petrol fillings stations and transform them into gas filling and electricity stations?

Jeyhun Mammadov: It depends on the demand. We are trying to be flexible in our work. We are ready to adapt to new trends of the society development. We already plan to install facilities designed for charging electric vehicles in our new filling stations.

 

CE: In which parts of Baku is the operation of petrol filling stations the most profitable in terms of their location?

Jeyhun Mammadov: It is certainly Petrol Filling Stations located in areas crossed by a high amount of vehicles. It is important to understand that construction of petrol filling stations implies the strictest compliance with the safety regulations and it is very difficult, sometimes impossible, to find a place for construction of the petrol station within the city.  It can be said that petrol stations built before the construction boom got the upper hand.  It is also noteworthy that gaining profits in our business does not always come first. One of the priority tasks is to supply fuel and working places for the most distant areas of our country. For this reason, we build petrol stations in areas with a small population and low amount of vehicle crossing, knowing that they will be unprofitable. As you know, almost 20% of the internationally recognized lands of Azerbaijan are under occupation. We pay particular attention to the areas located to the occupied ones. We build petrol stations there in order to provide people living there with working places and fuel but not for gaining profits.

 

 

 Thank you for the interview

 

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