President Serdar Berdimuhamedov of Turkmenistan visited China, 5-6 January 2023. It was a meticulously planned visit, leading to the expansion of the horizon of partnership between the two countries.
It was announced at the end of the summit talks that the relations between Turkmenistan and China had been upgraded to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
In this report we will first quote some parts of conversation between President Serdar Berdimuhamedov and President Xi Jinping to give an idea of empathy and rapport between the two leaders.
Further down in the report, we will give the list of documents that were signed during the visit. In all, there is a joint statement signed by the presidents and 15 other documents.
Near the end of this report we will briefly mention the meetings that the Turkmen president had with some top officials in addition to his summit talks with the president of China.
The translation of the text of the joint statement of both the presidents will be published separately.
Quite clearly, this visit has added plenty of new content to the partnership between Turkmenistan and China. We will look at that in a separate commentary.
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President Xi Jinping
This is your first visit to China after taking office as president, and today is the anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Turkmenistan. It is of great significance for us to make a comprehensive plan for the further development of China-Turkmenistan relations and jointly announce that the bilateral relationship will be upgraded to a comprehensive strategic partnership.
The Communist Party of China is uniting and leading the people of all ethnic groups in the country to comprehensively promote the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation through Chinese-style modernization, and the Turkmen side is actively promoting the rejuvenation strategy of Turkmenistan.
China and Turkmenistan have similar ideas, similar goals, and intertwined interests. On the road of development and revitalization, we should work together, give full play to complementary advantages, tap the potential of cooperation, and achieve common development.
China is willing to work with Turkmenistan to continue to deepen China-Turkmenistan all-round cooperation, promote the building of a community with a shared future between China and Turkmenistan, and advance bilateral relations to a higher level.
Building a community with a shared future between China and Turkey is based on mutual respect, honesty and mutual trust, mutual benefit and win-win results, to better deepen mutually beneficial cooperation, accommodate each other’s concerns, and consolidate friendship from generation to generation.
The two sides should support each other on issues of each other’s core interests, and respect each other’s development paths that suit their own national conditions.
The two countries should speed up the docking of development strategies, give full play to the role of mechanisms such as the China-Turkmenistan Cooperation Committee, continuously expand the breadth and depth of cooperation, and provide support for bilateral relations with tangible cooperation results.
In the face of new international and regional situations and new challenges, the two sides should deepen cooperation in law enforcement security and biological security, jointly combat the “three evils” and build a security barrier to safeguard the development of the two countries.
The two sides should strengthen exchanges in various fields and at all levels, carry out people-to-people and cultural cooperation, deepen people’s feelings, and build a solid public opinion and social foundation for the sustainable and healthy development of bilateral relations.
The two sides should give priority to expanding energy cooperation.
Natural gas cooperation is the cornerstone of China-Turkmenistan relations, and expanding natural gas cooperation is in line with the strategic and long-term interests of both China and Turkmenistan.
The two sides should speed up the implementation of major project cooperation, and at the same time comprehensively tap the potential of cooperation in the fields of green energy, natural gas utilization, technical equipment, etc., and create cooperation in the entire industrial chain.
The two sides should steadily promote economic and trade cooperation, implement the “China-Turkmenistan Government Cooperation Plan on Expanding Economic Relations”, and explore new ways and methods to expand economic and trade cooperation between the two countries.
China supports more powerful Chinese-funded enterprises to invest in Turkmenistan.
It is necessary to accelerate the promotion of interconnection and improve the facilitation level of personnel exchanges between the two countries.
Since the outbreak of the new coronavirus epidemic, China and Turkmenistan have actively carried out vaccine cooperation, which fully embodies the cooperation concept of helping each other and overcoming difficulties together.
The two sides should continue to strengthen medical and health cooperation and exchanges and mutual learning in the field of traditional medicine, and speed up the establishment of a traditional medicine center in Turkmenistan.
We should continue to intensify people-to-people and cultural exchanges, accelerate the establishment of mutual cultural centers, and build Luban workshops as soon as possible.
It is necessary to expand cooperation in news, media and other fields, successfully host the cultural year activities between China and Turkmenistan in 2023-2024, and support the expansion of local cooperation between the two countries.
The “China + Central Asia” cooperation mechanism is a new mechanism for cooperation between China and Central Asian countries, which is open and transparent, mutually beneficial and win-win, equal and reciprocal, and pragmatic and effective.
The Chinese side is willing to strengthen communication and cooperation with the Turkmenistan side to ensure the success of the first “China + Central Asia” summit.
Both China and Turkmenistan advocate maintaining peace and promoting development, and are fellow travellers in promoting global governance reform.
China supports Turkmenistan’s constructive cooperation with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and is willing to work with Turkmenistan to practice true multilateralism and jointly promote the building of a community with a shared future for the mankind.
President Serdar Berdimuhamedov
I am very pleased to pay the first state visit to China on the historic day of the 31st anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Turkmenistan and China.
The friendly exchanges between Turkey and China have a long history, and the ancient Silk Road has closely linked the two countries.
Since the establishment of diplomatic relations, especially the 10 years since the establishment of the strategic partnership in 2013, the two countries have achieved fruitful results in multi-level exchanges and cooperation in various fields; the friendship between the people has deepened, and the friendly relationship has been increasingly consolidated.
The Turkmen side speaks highly of the achievements in the development of bilateral relations, is proud of the high-level mutual trust and cooperation achievements between the two countries, and is willing to strengthen the mutual visits and exchanges with the Chinese side, learn from China’s successful development experience, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation between the two countries in an all-round way, and achieve common development.
The Turkmen side firmly supports China in safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity, and resolutely opposes any attempt to split China.
Turkmenistan is willing to actively promote the docking of the “Revival of the Silk Road” strategy and the “Belt and Road” initiative, further expand economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, strengthen energy cooperation such as natural gas, and promote cross-border railway and other interconnection construction, so as to better benefit the two peoples.
The Turkmen side also looks forward to further intensifying cultural and educational exchanges and cooperation with the Chinese side in fields such as medical care and health care.
The Turkmen side is willing to work with the Chinese side to elevate bilateral relations to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, and jointly promote the building of a Turkmenistan-China community with a shared future, so as to bring more benefits to the two peoples.
I would like to congratulate the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China again on its complete success.
Under the wise and strong leadership of President Xi Jinping, China has made great achievements in economic and social development and played an important and constructive role in promoting the establishment of a more just and reasonable international order.
The Communist Party of China is the backbone of the Chinese people.
The Turkmen side firmly believes that China will make greater achievements in the future and make greater contributions to maintaining world peace, stability and prosperity.
Turkmenistan and China have the same or similar views on many international and regional issues, and are willing to increase mutual support and cooperate more closely with China.
Turkmenistan speaks highly of and fully supports the “China + Central Asia” cooperation mechanism, and is willing to actively support China in successfully hosting the “China + Central Asia” summit to jointly safeguard regional security and development.
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On conclusion of the summit talks, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov and President Xi Jinping signed the joint statement.
Fifteen other documents were also signed:
- Memorandum of Cooperation between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China for 2023-2024;
- Protocol on amendments to the Agreement between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on the establishment of Turkmen-Chinese Cooperation Committee of August 29, 2008;
- Memorandum of understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on the promotion of investment cooperation in the digital economy;
- Memorandum of understanding on promotion of investment cooperation in the field of green development between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China;
- Memorandum of understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on the conjunction of international initiatives “Revival of the Great Silk Road” and “One Belt and One Road”;
- Plan of cooperation in the sphere of culture between the Ministry of Culture of Turkmenistan and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China for 2023-2026;
- Agreement on exchange of news and cooperation between the State News Agency of Turkmenistan and the Xinhua News Agency of the People’s Republic of China;
- Memorandum of understanding on cooperation between the State News Agency of Turkmenistan and the newspaper Renmin Ribao (People’s Republic of China);
- Memorandum of information and news cooperation between the State Television, Radio and Film Committee and the China Media Corporation;
- Action plan on healthcare between the Ministry of Healthcare and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and the State Healthcare Commission of the People’s Republic of China for the period 2023-2027;
- Memorandum of cooperation between the National Olympic Committee of Turkmenistan and the Chinese Olympic Committee;
- Memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the field of sports between the State Committee of Physical Education and Sport of Turkmenistan and the General State Administration of Physical Education and Sport of the People’s Republic of China;
- Memorandum of understanding between Türkmengaz (Turkmen Gas) State Concern and the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) on cooperation in the gas sphere;
- Memorandum of understanding between the Yagshigeldy Kakayev International University of Oil and Gas (Turkmenistan) and the University of China National Petroleum Corporation (People’s Republic of China);
- Memorandum of cooperation between the Magtymguly Turkmen State University and Peking University of Foreign Languages (People’s Republic of China).
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President Serdar Berdimuhamedov also had separate meetings with the following top officials:
- Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China Li Keqiang
- Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China Li Zhanshu
Rashid Meredov, the deputy prime minister and foreign minister of Turkmenistan had a meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Han Zheng. /// nCa, 7 January 2023 [Pictures credit TDH, People’s Daily]