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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Stamp Investment Tip: Azerbaijan 1994 Minerals Souvenir Sheet (Scott #422a)

In 1994, Azerbaijan issued a souvenir sheet picturing minerals (Scott #422a). 50,000 of the souvenir sheet were issued, and Scott '13 prices it unused at $ 3.50.

The issue has appeal to both collectors of Azerbaijan and Minerals topicalists, and is an inexpensive bet on the economic growth of Azerbaijan and the development of a stamp market there. This recommendation is consistent with my belief that one of the best ways to play the new and newly resurrected countries of Europe and Asia is to focus on popular topicals with low printings.

Azerbaijan is an oil-rich nation of about 9 million people, which also has significant reserves of natural gas and various minerals. Agriculture and tourism are also important to the Azerbaijani economy. The country shares all the problems of the former Soviet republics in making the transition from a command to a market economy, but its energy resources brighten its long-term prospects. It has begun making progress on economic reform, and old economic ties and structures are slowly being replaced. Annual GDP growth has averaged a stellar 21% over the last 5 years, largely based on the frenetic development of the country's oil wealth - an estimated 7 billion barrels of reserves.

Those interested in becoming part of an international community of stamp collectors, dealers, and investors are encouraged to join the "Stampselectors" group at Facebook. The group hosts lively discussions concerning stamp investment and practical aspects of collecting, and provides a useful venue for those who wish to buy, sell, or trade stamps.  

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