The summit talks were held in Ashgabat between President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov and President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev Thursday, 21 October.
Following the visit, 14 bilateral documents were signed, including a Declaration on deepening strategic partnership.
The heads of state launched the construction of the Dashoguz-Khorezm border trade zone via a videoconference.
The President of Uzbekistan also visited the Magtymguly Turkmen State University, where he was awarded the title of honorary professor.
President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, welcoming President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, said that this visit is considered as an important milestone event in the development of interstate relations.
Expressing gratitude for Uzbekistan’s firm and unwavering support for Turkmenistan’s neutral foreign policy, international initiatives put forward at the UN and other international platforms, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov stated that, in turn, Turkmenistan always supports the multi-vector foreign policy of the neighboring country.
During the talks, the Presidents focused on continuing joint activities in such important areas as energy, transport, agriculture, industrial cooperation, high technology and trade. Special attention is paid to partnership in the water management and environmental spheres.
Special emphasis was placed on bilateral cooperation in the trade and economic sphere, energy, transport and logistics, water, agricultural and other areas. The agreements reached are being successfully implemented on the basis of the Roadmap.
The parties also paid attention to the state and prospects of cultural and humanitarian ties.
The presidents exchanged views on key aspects of Turkmen-Uzbek cooperation, taking into account new opportunities and joint plans for the future. Issues of mutual interest on the regional and global agenda were also discussed. The topic of Central Asian cooperation was given special attention.
Further negotiations continued in an expanded format, with the participation of the official delegations of the two countries.
“This is our second official meeting in the last four months, which indicates the importance attached by the leadership of our countries to the dynamic development of bilateral relations, strengthening the bonds of friendship, good-neighborliness and cooperation between the fraternal peoples of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, consolidating and implementing the agreements that were reached during my state visit to Uzbekistan in July this year,” President Serdar Berdimuhamedov said.
The two countries continued to actively cooperate on enhancing regional and international security, combating international terrorism, drug trafficking, and cross-border organized crime.
President Berdimuhamedov highly appreciated Uzbekistan’s support for Turkmenistan’s neutral foreign policy and the country’s initiatives in international organizations. “Uzbekistan has co-sponsored 17 Resolutions of the UN General Assembly put forward by our country, and is also a member of the Friends of Neutrality Group established within the walls of the UN on the initiative of Turkmenistan,” he added.
The President of Turkmenistan listed preventing attempts to destabilize the situation, terrorist, extremist, and radical manifestations, as well as ensuring long-term peace, security, and development in Central Asia, as priorities of cooperation between the two nations.
The state of affairs in Afghanistan came up during the discussions. The Turkmen leader backed Uzbekistan’s initiatives to foster enabling international conditions for achieving objectives like ensuring peace and stability in this state, creating an environment for social and economic recovery, and offering aid to the Afghan people.
Particular focus was made on the positive growth of collaboration with Uzbekistan in water management and water-energy areas based on mutual respect, equality, and consideration of each other’s interests.
“Our countries will continue to cooperate on the Aral Sea issues through the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea, as well as in international organizations and specialized UN bodies,” President Serdar Berdimuhamedov said.
Speaking about the potential of economic partnership with Uzbekistan, the head of Turkmenistan confirmed his intention to provide state support in attracting Turkmen and Uzbek companies to participate in joint investment projects.
The key promising areas of cooperation are the agro-industrial complex, energy, chemical and petrochemical industries, mechanical engineering, textile, pharmaceutical industries.
Turkmenistan also supports the expansion of cross-border ties and regional trade.
Turning to the topic of energy, the President of Turkmenistan stressed that the two countries have already implemented a major energy project – the Turkmenistan–Uzbekistan–Kazakhstan–China gas pipeline. At the same time, Turkmenistan is ready to consider, together with Uzbek partners, opportunities for a significant increase in energy supplies and expansion of their transit configuration.
“I believe that the efforts of our countries can and should be aimed at achieving the main goal – the creation of a powerful and modern infrastructure that would ensure the linkage of the transport systems of Central Asia, Europe, and the Middle East”, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov stressed.
In this context, Turkmenistan’s commitment to joint work on the development of the Uzbekistan–Turkmenistan–Caspian Sea–Black Sea Ports-Europe transport route and the Uzbekistan–Turkmenistan–Iran–Oman–Qatar corridor was confirmed.
Special attention was paid to inter-parliamentary cooperation. Close cooperation between the legislative bodies of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan is an essential and integral part of interstate relations.
Then the floor was given to the President of Uzbekistan.
” We have always supported and will continue to support the Turkmenistan-sponsored General Assembly Resolutions. For thousands of years, the Uzbek and Turkmen peoples have lived side by side and have always been a support for each other. The centuries-old ties of friendship and good neighborliness still serve as a solid foundation for the progressive development of our strategic partnership,” President Shavkat Mirziyoyev assured.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have confirmed their mutual readiness to strengthen and fill close cooperation with tangible content by adopting the Declaration on Deepening Strategic Partnership today, said Uzbekistan’s president.
It was emphasized that the economy is the engine of bilateral relations and that efforts must be increased to fully utilize the enormous potential of both countries. As a result, mutual trade has grown rapidly in recent years.
The Uzbek-Turkmen Border Trade Zone will serve to further increase contacts between business circles, as well as create new jobs in the regions, he added.
President Mirziyoyev expressed confidence that the signing of agreements on the further development of bilateral foreign economic relations and regulation of trading houses, as well as interdepartmental documents between our customs services, will help to achieve the goals set.
As it was stressed, promising cooperation projects in such priority areas as industry, energy, chemical industry, agriculture, transport and logistics were discussed at the meeting in a narrow format.
The transportation sector was designated as one of the strategic vectors, where significant progress has been made.
Water use issues remain an urgent topic of bilateral cooperation. Cooperation between Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan in this area is indeed exemplary, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev stressed, expressing the intention of the parties to continue the full-scale implementation of the historic agreement on the Amu Darya River.
The leaders of the two nations confirmed their mutual interest in further expanding mutually beneficial cooperation in the field of energy and chemical industry.
The President of Uzbekistan highlighted the need to effectively use the potential of inter-parliamentary friendship groups to monitor the implementation and promotion of agreements at the highest level.
Special importance is attached to the cultural and humanitarian ties, Mirziyoyev said.
The countries will mark the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations next year with cross-cultural and movie days, as well as youth festivals involving the two countries’ regions.
Interest was also expressed in the development of partnership in the field of tourism, horse breeding.
Following the Turkmen-Uzbek summit talks in an expanded format, the following bilateral documents were signed:
- Declaration on deepening the strategic partnership between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan
- MoU between the State Customs Service of Turkmenistan and the State Customs Committee of Uzbekistan in the field of personnel training;
- MoU between the State Customs Service of Turkmenistan and the State Customs Committee of Uzbekistan in the field of prevention, detection and commission of suspicious financial transactions by the parties;
- MoU between the State Committee of Turkmenistan on Television, Radio Broadcasting and Cinematography and the Cinematography Agency of Uzbekistan in the field of film production;
- Agreement between the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and the Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan on accounting of medicines and medical devices;
- Agreement between the Hydrometeorology Service of the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan and the Hydrometeorological Service Center of Uzbekistan on scientific and technical cooperation;
- MoU between the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan and the State Committee for the Development of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Medicine of Uzbekistan on cooperation in the field of animal husbandry and veterinary medicine;
- “Road map” on further development of cooperation in agriculture;
- MoU between the Ministry of Energy of Turkmenistan and the Ministry of Energy of Uzbekistan on further development of cooperation in the electric power sector;
- Agreement on further development of bilateral foreign economic cooperation;
- Agreement on regulating the activities of trading houses on the territory of Turkmenistan and of Uzbekistan;
- Protocol on the continuation of work on regulating the activities of Turkmen-Uzbek border trade zones – Trade centers;
- Plan of practical measures for 2022-2024 to intensify political relations, inter-parliamentary, trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian exchange between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan;
- Protocol between the foreign ministries on mutual cooperation within the framework of international organizations.
At the end of the signing ceremony, the two heads of state addressed the media.
The leaders briefed on the content of the negotiations and also confirmed the shared stances of the regional and global agenda.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have common or close positions on such key issues of the global agenda as the maintenance of universal peace and stability, countering the threats of international terrorism, extremism, and resolving the situation in Afghanistan, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov said.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are convinced that all problems in the region should be solved by peaceful means, on the principles of good neighborliness, mutual respect, equality and consideration of each other’s interests. We regard meddling in the internal affairs of sovereign states in the region, as well as attempts to destabilize the political situation through the employment of extremist, radical elements, to be totally unacceptable, he added.
In turn, President Mirziyoyev noted that following the negotiations, a solid package of bilateral agreements covering key areas of multifaceted cooperation was signed.
He expressed hope that the results of the summit meeting will contribute to the comprehensive strengthening of friendship and good-neighborly relations, bringing the strategic partnership between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan to a qualitatively new level in the interests of the two fraternal countries and peoples.
As part of an official visit to Turkmenistan, President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev met with Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
Mirziyoyev stressed that the large-scale socio-economic reforms initiated by him laid a solid basis for building a strong Turkmenistan.
Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov’s personal contribution to the strengthening of friendship and good-neighborly relations between the two countries was emphasized.
The parties emphasized that Turkmen-Uzbek relations are a true model of an interstate partnership with no unresolved issues.
At the meeting, a wide variety of bilateral cooperation and interaction issues on regional and international platforms were thoroughly reviewed.
It was noted that the inter-parliamentary dialogue is becoming the most important factor in the further rapprochement of the two peoples.
At the end of the meeting, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov gifted Shavkat Mirziyoyev a puppy of the Alabay dog breed, which was named Alabay. A certificate of the pedigree was also presented.
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev visited the memorial complex “Halk hakydasy” (“People’s Memory”) in the city of Ashgabat, where he laid flowers at the memorial and left an entry in the Book of Honored Guests.
Mirziyoyev visited Magtymguly Turkmen State University, where a solemn ceremony was held to confer on him the academic title of Honorary Professor.
The title was awarded to Uzbek leader for his personal merits and significant contribution to strengthening and expanding traditionally friendly, fraternal and good-neighborly relations between the Turkmen and Uzbek peoples, fruitful interstate cooperation in political, trade and economic, fuel and energy, transport and communication, scientific and educational, cultural and humanitarian, sports and tourism spheres.
The Presidents of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan took part in the opening ceremony of the Tashkent Park in Ashgabat.
The park is located on the Magtymguly avenue. It occupies the territory of about 3 hectares and accommodates miniature copies of the sights of Tashkent.
The heads of state walked around the park and planted trees as a sign of good intentions.
National songs and melodies of the Uzbek and Turkmen peoples were performed. The Presidents wished happiness to a couple of newlyweds who celebrated their wedding there.
From the Tashkent Park, Presidents Serdar Berdimuhamedov and Shavkat Mirziyoyev took part via videoconference in the ceremony of groundbreaking of the Turkmen-Uzbek border trade zone – a Trade center.
The construction of a Border Trade Zone is being carried out on the adjacent territory of the Shavat–Dashoguz border crossing point.
The zone will include commercial pavilions, warehouses, container sites, and business offices. The project will play an important role in the growth of mutual trade and the activation of business contacts.
In the evening, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov gave an official dinner in honor of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
Then the Uzbek leader left for Tashkent. President Serdar Berdimuhamedov saw him off at the airport.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, hereinafter referred to as the Parties,
Guided by the fundamental principles of Turkmen-Uzbek relations laid down in the Agreement on Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan dated January 16, 1996 and the Agreement on Strategic Partnership between Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan dated March 6, 2017,
Noting the high level of Turkmen-Uzbek relations at the present stage of strengthening strategic partnership,
Striving to give a long-term character to multifaceted bilateral relations, actively develop them in political, economic, trade, investment, scientific, technical, cultural, humanitarian and other promising areas, taking into account current conditions and trends in the global economy,
Convinced that further development and deepening of bilateral relations meets the fundamental interests of the two fraternal States and will contribute to their prosperity, as well as to strengthening peace, stability and security in the region,
Reaffirming commitment to the fundamental international legal norms and principles enshrined in the UN Charter,
declare the following:
The Parties hereby declare the formation of a deep strategic partnership between them, with the goal of elevating diversified and complex ties and giving them a particularly close and dynamic character for growing cooperation in the bilateral format and in the international arena.
The in-depth strategic partnership between the Parties is based on their observance of the principles of sovereignty, equality and territorial integrity of States, inviolability of borders, non-interference in their internal affairs, mutual respect and mutual benefit, and also envisages the development of large-scale cooperation in the following areas.
The sides note with satisfaction that the Turkmen-Uzbek relations are based on deep political trust and strategic leadership of the heads of the two states.
The President of Turkmenistan and the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan will meet on a regular basis to determine priority areas and forms of further development of political, trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian cooperation in the interests of strengthening friendly relations and fruitful cooperation between the two countries.
The parties agreed to maintain high-level contacts between the legislative bodies of the two states, to use the format of inter-parliamentary exchanges and dialogue between friendship groups for comprehensive multi-level communication on a broad agenda.
The parties will hold regular consultations through the foreign ministries to exchange views and coordinate positions on issues of bilateral relations, topical international and regional issues of mutual interest.
The parties will maintain active cooperation within the framework of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Consultative Meetings of the Heads of Central Asian States, the Organization of Turkic States, and other multilateral structures and formats, including mutual support when considering various issues and initiatives affecting mutual interests.
The parties agreed that the continuation of socioeconomic aid and the implementation of development projects are critical to preventing a humanitarian disaster, stabilizing the situation, and rebuilding Afghanistan post-conflict.
Interaction on security issues
The parties will deepen partnerships between interested agencies, cooperation within the framework of international and regional organizations in the field of countering terrorism, extremism and separatism, laundering of criminal proceeds, illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances, their analogues and precursors, weapons and ammunition, organized crime.
The parties express concern about the use of modern information and communication technologies for illegal purposes and damage to national security, including interference in the internal affairs of states and undermining their sovereignty, and also emphasize the importance of further fostering bilateral cooperation in the field of international information security.
The parties confirm their commitment to constructive cooperation to ensure international information and biological security at the regional and global levels, primarily within the framework of the United Nations.
Each Party does not allow the use of its territory to undermine the security of the other Party.
Interaction on legal issues
The parties will continue close cooperation in the field of legal assistance in civil, family and criminal cases on the basis of the existing legal framework.
Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan express their readiness to expand the exchange of experience on legal issues within the framework of interaction between customs and tax services, labor and employment authorities, as well as migration authorities.
The parties will continue to make joint efforts aimed at enhancing the legal foundations of international relations at the bilateral and multilateral levels.
Trade and economic cooperation
The parties will continue coordinating through the Intergovernmental Commission between Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan on trade, economic, scientific, technical and cultural cooperation.
The parties will make joint efforts to deepen investment cooperation, increase the volume and expansion of mutual trade, as well as to remove barriers hindering its development.
The parties intend to give impetus to cooperation in the field of agriculture and the systematic development of ties between the agro-industrial complexes of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan, including in order to increase the volume and expand the supply of agricultural products and food to the markets of both countries.
The parties seek to strengthen their long-term mutually advantageous relationships through the realization of joint mutually beneficial projects and will prioritize the industrial cooperation.
The parties express their readiness to actively cooperate in the joint development of trade zones in the border territories.
The parties welcome the cooperation of the two countries’ companies in the field of mutual supplies of motor and specialized equipment.
The parties will support the activities of the chambers of commerce and industry of their states in order to expand direct contacts between entrepreneurs and business associations of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The parties welcome the constructive interaction of the relevant ministries and departments in the field of transport, which is of key importance in realizing the transit potential of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The Parties will keep up their systematic mutually beneficial cooperation in an effort to further optimize tariffs and create favorable conditions for the transit transportation of foreign trade goods in order to increase the competitiveness and attractiveness of international transport routes passing through the territories of the two nations.
The Parties stressed the need for a flexible tariff policy, creation of favorable conditions for cargo transportation and data exchange in digital format, development of other forms of cooperation between customs and other authorities of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in order to facilitate the import/export of goods on the territory of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The Parties will actively cooperate in the field of civil aviation for the further development of air communication between the countries.
The Parties expressed their readiness to cooperate closely in the field of international road transport in order to create favorable conditions for national road carriers.
The Parties express their readiness to develop joint multimodal routes with maximum loading of the Turkmenbashi port.
The Parties will promote the implementation of the processes of connectivity of Central and South Asia, primarily with the formation of conditions for the promotion of transport and logistics infrastructure projects that complement each other and have interregional significance.
The Parties will continue comprehensive cooperation in the energy sector, which is important for the development of the economies and ensuring the energy security of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The Parties express their further readiness to purchase, supply and transit natural gas and electricity on mutually beneficial terms for the short, medium and long term.
The parties support the expansion of mutually beneficial relations between the regions and emphasize the importance of further formation of favorable conditions for their development in the industrial, innovative, scientific, technical and humanitarian spheres.
The Parties will continue to deepen direct trade and economic ties between the administrative-territorial entities of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan, their economic entities through mutual participation in exhibition and fair events, business missions, through the rapid exchange of information on products offered for sale, exchange of information on enterprises registered in the territories of the Parties interested in establishing commercial contacts.
In this regard, the Parties note the importance of further effective implementation of the Agreement between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan on interregional cooperation dated 23 April 2018.
Cultural and humanitarian cooperation
The parties express their intention to continue further cooperation through educational institutions of higher, secondary and vocational education of the two states, based on the real needs of the regions and relevant sectors of the economy.
Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan will fully encourage cooperation on the training of professional personnel.
The Parties will continue cooperation in the field of concert-touring and theatrical activities, museum and library work, will promote the Days of Culture of Turkmenistan in the Republic of Uzbekistan and the Days of Culture of the Republic of Uzbekistan in Turkmenistan.
The deepening of ties in the field of healthcare, pharmaceuticals, medical education and science, the development of business contacts between healthcare organizations, higher professional education and science of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan will continue.
The Parties will pay great attention to the training, retraining and advanced training of healthcare professionals, the participation of specialists, teachers and students in international events organized by each of the Parties.
The Parties attach great importance to cooperation in both bilateral and multilateral formats in the field of combating the spread of dangerous infectious diseases and note that the accumulated experience of countries in ensuring a favorable sanitary and epidemiological situation will be used in the future as a basis for activities to prevent new epidemics.
In order to study the prospects and determine priorities for the effective development of cooperation between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, the parties stressed the importance of developing ties between think tanks and expert and analytical communities of the two countries.
The parties express their interest in intensifying cooperation between the leading state and non-state mass media, telecommunications companies of Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The Parties will continue to develop cooperation in the field of environmental safety, environmental protection, prevention of transboundary pollution, rational use of natural resources, prevention and elimination of natural and man-made emergencies.
The sides stressed the importance of continuing constructive dialogue in the field of equitable use of water resources of transboundary rivers of Central Asia.
Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan consider the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea as a universal platform for cooperation between the countries of Central Asia on the implementation of environmental and scientific and technical projects and programs aimed at ecological rehabilitation of areas affected by the Aral disaster.
The Parties will fully participate in this format’s activities since they see this approach as crucial to achieving sustainable development in Central Asia.
The President of Turkmenistan and the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan are convinced that the implementation of the provisions of this Declaration will serve to further strengthen the strategic partnership of the two States for the benefit of the fraternal peoples of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, in the interests of peace and prosperity. ///nCa, 23 October 2022 (photo source – official website of President of Uzbekistan)