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Azerbaijan`s first national news agency AZERTAC turns 97.
AZERTAC`s most recent success
The year 2016 marked a new glorious page in AZERTAC’s history. AZERTAC hosted a meeting of the News Agencies World Congress (NACO) and the 16th General Assembly of the Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (OANA). Hosted in partnership with the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, the event brought together more than 200 heads and representatives of 130 news agencies from 80 countries, international media executives, UN and UNESCO officials as well as experts from regional media organizations. President Ilham Aliyev’s impressive speech at the joint opening ceremony of these two events and his meeting with a group of Congress participants was of crucial importance. Global media policy makers highly appreciated the Azerbaijani President`s erudition, and his creative approach to the relations between the society, government and media. Over 150 news agencies covered these events hosted by Baku.
AZERTAC will hold the presidency of both News Agencies World Congress and Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies for a three year term from 2016 to 2019.
AZERTAC was established in just one year
The founding of Azerbaijan Telegraph Agency was discussed at a session of the Council of Ministers of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic on 3 March 1919. The session heard from chairman of the Council of Ministers Fatali Khan Khoyski, and the task of establishing the agency was entrusted to Minister of Enlightenment Nasib bay Usubbayov. This task was later entrusted to the Ministry of Posts and Telegraph. A draft law on the founding of AZERTAC and the agency`s statute were drawn up in the second half of 1919.
As an independent agency AZERTAC existed for only two months
On 2 February 1920 a draft staff plan and statute of the agency were discussed at a session of the government and then submitted to the parliament. At the parliament`s February 23 session parliamentarians Agha Eminov and Agha Ashurov substantiated the necessity of establishing AZERTAC.
The first national news agency was founded on 1 March 1920 by the government of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic. AZERTAC published its first news in Azerbaycan newspaper on 2 March. However, the agency existed for only two months as the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic collapsed on 28 April.
AZERTAC becomes branch of Russian Telegraph Agency (ROSTA)
Although AZERTAC was formally independent in the first months when the Soviet Union was established, in fact, the agency was made a branch of the Russian Telegraph Agency (ROSTA).
On 9 June 1920, Nariman Narimanov signed an order establishing Azerbaijan Central Press Authority, with the agency included in it as AzQafRosta. Outstanding journalist Aghababa Yusifzade played a crucial role in organizing the work of the agency.
AzQafRosta was located in a bank building on the Tarlan Aliyarbayov Street. In 1921, the agency was restructured into QafRosta. On 14 June, Qubad Qasimov, a prominent researcher of the history of Azerbaijan`s musical culture, was appointed as the agency`s director.
In August of 1921 AZERTAC was renamed AzerTA. With the establishment of the USSR in 1922 AzerTA was made a branch of the Telegraph Agency of the Soviet Union (TASS). The establishment of the Transcaucasian Federation in March of 1923 saw news agencies of three South Caucasus republics merge into ZaqTA.
In 1932, the agency was supplied with a Kleinschmidt teleprinter. In 1936, AzerTA again became an independent news agency.
AZERTAC`s revival dates back to 1969
National leader Heydar Aliyev`s coming to political power in Azerbaijan in 1969 marked the beginning of the revival of all spheres of the republic`s life. The national news agency, then called Azerinform, also entered a new stage of its development. In the 1970s, when the head office of TASS in Moscow was computerized for the first time, Heydar Aliyev provided Azerinform with “Videoton” and “Olivetti” computers, making it the second agency after Ukrinform to be supplied with state-of-the-art computers.
Throughout its history the agency has had its name changed eight times. The agency returned its historical name when Azerbaijan restored its independence. On 3 March 1995, the agency was renamed “State Telegraph Agency under the Cabinet of Ministers”, on 17 January 2000 “Azerbaijan State Telegraph Agency”. On 26 February 2015, President Ilham Aliyev signed an executive order renaming the agency Azerbaijan State News Agency.
AZERTAC produces news in 7 and video in 5 languages
Working on a round-the-clock basis, AZERTAC is producing news in 7 languages, including in Azerbaijani, English, Russian, French, German, Arabic and Chinese covering socio-political, economic, scientific, educational, cultural, healthcare, sport, environmental and other fields. The agency is producing more than 10,000 news items, more than 50,000 photos, more than 1,300 videos, as well as infographics on a monthly basis.
AZERTAC is a member of OANA, EANA, News Agencies World Congress, as well as ANIA, BSANNA, TKA and IINA.
In 2011-2013, AZERTAC chaired the Black Sea Association of National News Agencies. It currently presides over the Union of the Turkic Speaking News Agencies. AZERTAC will be holding the presidency of OANA and News Agencies World Congress in 2016-2019. The agency`s Director General is vice-president of OANA and member of the Executive Board of News Agencies World Congress
AZERTAC maintains cooperation with news agencies of 45 countries
AZERTAC has bilateral agreements with news agencies of around 45 countries, and maintains successful cooperation with them. The agency has bureaus in 21 countries and all regions of the country. The agency has its accounts in Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram in 7 languages.
AZERTAC is doing its utmost to respond flexibly to current challenges and master advanced technologies in order to preserve and cement its standing on the information arena amid media boom and tough competition in social network. The agency has sufficient creative and technical potential to get this mission fulfilled.