The social and economic entrepreneurship of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic
Today, Azerbaijan celebrates 99th anniversary of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic
The ADR was established after the collapse of the Russian Empire. Head of the National Council of Azerbaijan – Mammad Amin Rasulzade – the key individual which ADR was founded under his leadership and entrepreneurial ideology, signed “Act of Independence of Azerbaijan” exactly on this day 99 years ago. Ganja and Baku were chosen as capitals, accordingly.
ADR is one of the first countries that given voting right to the women and securing the equality between men and women. It was the first democratic, secular, parliamentary republic established in Turkish and Muslim Orient in the East which granted its citizens equal political and civil rights regardless of their national identities, faiths, classes and races.
“Act of Independence of Azerbaijan” thereby stated:
- Since this day, Azerbaijan, covering the South-East Transcaucasia is fully independent state.
- The people of the independent Azerbaijan are the source of government.
- The People’s Republic of Azerbaijan will establish good relations with all nations, especially with neighbor countries.
- The People’s Republic of Azerbaijan ensures the political rights and citizenship to all its residents within its bounds regardless of nationality, faith, class, estate and sex.
- The People’s Republic of Azerbaijan creates wide opportunities for free development of all nations, residing within its bounds.
- Azerbaijan will be headed by the Temporary Government, reporting to the National Council and the National Council, elected by the people, until the gathering of the Assembly of Entrepreneurs.
During this era, main intellectual and political sentiments were increasingly influenced by Pan-Turkism and Pan-Islamism. Ultimately, key figures of ADR’s economic elite, such as Ali bey Huseynzadeh, Mammad Amin Rasulzade, Ali Mardan Topchubashov, Ahmed Agaoglu, Khalil bey Khasmammadov, Fatali khan Khoyski and other social entrepreneurs and influencers commonly indoctrinated their genuine concept of Azerbaijanism – which was proportionally stuck to modernization, Turkish and Islamic heritage.
Azerbaijan Democratic Republic’s economic initiatives were also notable as it was almost first time ever that economic and property pluralism was initiated. With respect to property, the establishment of 4 of different types; private, personal, commonly and state property, stimulated nations’ economic development. In order to stimulate an economic and social enlightenment, Azerbaijan Democratic Republic put several remarkable steps into the place:
- Baku-Djulfa railway was constructed.
- Baku-Batum oil pipeline was relaunched.
- Ministry of Education was founded.
- First University – Baku State University was established.
- European-style boarding school for Azerbaijani girls was built and started functioning.
- 100 chosen students were sent to go on their studies abroad. 45 people were sent to France, 23 people to Italy, 10 people to England, 9 people to Turkey to study at high schools. 10 people to be sent to study in Russia could not commence their education due to Russian civil war.
- Azerbaijan State Bank established and started functioning.
- Paper money – Baku bonds, was put into circulation by the Baku Municipal Administration.
- Free movement of goods and free trade inside & off the country was initiated. Foreign investment was encouraged to invest in.
As a result of the military intervention of Russia whereas international norms and laws were violated by Red Army and thus the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic annexed to Russia.