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Azad Rahimov: "I believe that the Chess Olympiad 2016 will be held at the highest level."
The Minister spoke about the development of chess in Azerbaijan: "We have chess traditions and accomplishments in Azerbaijan and we do not want to lose them. By the initiative of our former President, Heydar Aliyev, many chess schools were built across the country. More than 70 school were built at that time. Our current president, Ilham Aliyev, continues this policy. We have chess schools and centers in every region. Many children and young people show great interest in this game and this is very important for Azerbaijan to hold such chess events like this one.First of all, spectators can watch world's strongest players here. Such events provide a serious input into the development of chess in the country. In the next year our country will host another important chess events - Chess Olympiad 2016. This decision was made during the Chess Olympiad 2012 in Istanbul. I believe that the Chess Olympiad 2016 will be held at the highest level.
I was really happy to see how the play of Shakhriyar Mamedyarov at this tournament was admired by the spectators and fans. During one of the days, more than 600 spectators came here to see the match, so that additional space had to be created in the playing hall. This shows great interest in chess in the society and I think that chess can play a big role in youth development. I wish all the best to all chess players in their upcoming challenges".