At present, cultural-political reforms starting with developing the draft Culture Strategy of the Republic of Azerbaijan for the period up to 2030 are planned and being carried out by the new leadership of the Ministry of Culture. This Culture Strategy was drafted to develop Azerbaijani culture, protecting it from internal and external threats, its worthy representation in world culture, ensuring cultural rights and freedoms. Proceeding from the Azerbaijan 2030: National Priorities for Socio-Economic Development (2021), the Culture Strategy envisages implementing the Concept of Culture of the Republic of Azerbaijan (2014) at the current historical stage. The legal basis of the Culture Strategy is the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan (1995), the Law on Culture (2012), international conventions, agreements and other relevant normative legal acts to which the Republic of Azerbaijan is a party.
The drafting of the Culture Strategy is based on:
- The Constitutional Law of the Republic of Azerbaijan “On Normative Legal Acts”(2010),
- The Law of the Republic of Azerbaijan“On Public Participation” (2013),
- The “Regulations on the Procedure for Preparation and Adoption of Normative Legal Acts of Executive Authorities” (2002), and
- The “Rules for the Preparation, Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation of State Programmes” (2021).
The Culture Strategy launches reforms arising from the internal needs of culture, taking into account international experience and social order. The strategy defines modernisation of organisational tools applied in such sub-areas of cultural activity as immovable cultural heritage (including historical and cultural monuments and parks, movable cultural treasures (including museum exhibits), intangible cultural heritage (including folk creativity), professional art (theatre, music, fine arts, and choreography), book circulation, cinematography and creative industries as a strategic goal. Simultaneously, the strategy mandates improvements in the legal, administrative, financial, information, personnel, infrastructural and international support mechanisms of national cultural policy to resolve challenges cultural policymakers face in developing new priorities.
Based on a description of global and regional trends, challenges and threats, analysis of the current situation in the sub-sectors (structure, functions, organisations, employees and brief information on the work done), the Culture Strategy for 2030 lists five priority areas:
- “Protection of cultural heritage and its transmission to future generations”,
- “Development of man and society”,
- “Support for cultural and creative industries”,
- “International promotion of Azerbaijani culture”, and
- “The return of сulture to Karabakh, the return of Karabakh to сulture”.
In connection with the issues raised: the main reasons for prioritising the relevant areas are identified, existing problems and shortcomings are revealed, measures are proposed, expected results and outcome indicators are determined, and possible risks and steps to neutralise them are reviewed.
The Strategy prescribes preparing and implementing strategic planning documents in priority areas, legislative, financing and institutional reforms, optimising human resources and infrastructure units, creating comprehensive databases, et cetera. Public debates are envisaged, and the opinion of professionals will be taken into account during all these procedures.