Qian Naicheng, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Turkmenistan
At the invitation of the President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping, from January 5 to 6, 2023, President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov paid a state visit to China. The year 2023 marks the 10th anniversary of the establishment of a strategic partnership between China and Turkmenistan.
It is especially symbolic that on January 6, exactly on the day of the 31st anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Turkmenistan, the Heads of the two countries held talks, outlined the main directions of Chinese-Turkmen relations, signed and published the “Joint Statement of the People’s Republic of China and Turkmenistan” and announced the raising of Chinese-Turkmen relations to the level of a comprehensive strategic partnership.
Achieving a new leap forward in Chinese-Turkmen relations is primarily due to the strategic leadership of the Heads of the two countries. In 2022, the Leaders of China and Turkmenistan jointly took part in the China-Central Asia online summit on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, met in person 2 times during the Winter Olympic Games – 2022 in Beijing, as well as within the framework of Samarkand SCO summit. They maintain constant strategic contacts, determine the direction and continuously give the strongest momentum to the development of Chinese-Turkmen relations and cooperation in various fields.
Secondly, it is a strong political guarantee. The long-term stability of the political situation and the consistency of the policies of China and Turkmenistan are the unique advantages of developing strategic cooperation between the two countries. In 2022, the relevant authorities and departments of both sides at all levels took active steps in a timely manner to carefully implement the agreements reached by the Heads of the two countries. The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of our countries held meetings 3 times, mutual visits of the Ministers of Defense were also made. The legislative bodies and political parties of China and Turkmenistan are deeply exchanging views and experience on public administration issues, which strengthens the political and legislative foundation of strategic cooperation between our countries. Both sides firmly support each other on issues affecting each other’s fundamental interests, mutually respect the development path chosen in accordance with national realities, and closely coordinate and interact in the international arena, including within the United Nations, as well as in regional affairs. .
Third, it is a powerful internal dynamics. China has been the largest trading partner of Turkmenistan for 12 consecutive years. Based on the principles of mutual respect, mutual benefit and win-win, the two sides promote the continuous deepening of the interface between the One Belt, One Road Initiative and the Revival of the Great Silk Road strategy for the benefit of the peoples of both countries. Cooperation in the field of natural gas is the cornerstone of Sino-Turkmen relations. Turkmenistan exported more than 350 billion cubic meters of gas to China, which brings the warmth of “blue gold” to hundreds of millions of Chinese families and provides a stable budget income to the Turkmen side.
Fourth, it is an effective mechanism for cooperation. Adhering to the systemic concept, the China-Turkmenistan Intergovernmental Committee for Cooperation and the subcommittees for cooperation in the fields of trade, energy, humanitarian exchange, security, transport and logistics play a fully coordinated role in the comprehensive implementation of the Cooperation Program between the Government of the PRC and the Government of Turkmenistan for 5 years (2021 -2025), define a timetable and roadmap for strategic cooperation in all areas to develop comprehensively and side by side.
Fifth, it is a solid social foundation. The peoples of the two countries share close or common values and cherish the brotherhood that has been formed over centuries of history. The two countries continue to deepen cooperation in areas such as education, culture, science and technology, sports, as well as regional cooperation, and selflessly help each other in anti-epidemic cooperation, which further strengthens traditional friendship. The relationship between the peoples serves as a strong social support for the all-round strategic cooperation between the two countries.
Of particular importance is the fact that China and Turkmenistan have bright prospects for their development. In 2022, the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China ended successfully, the country’s multinational people embarked on a new campaign to comprehensively build a modern socialist country, and comprehensively promote the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation through the Chinese path of modernization. Turkmenistan has entered a new stage of “Revival of a new era of a powerful state”, has developed a new development plan – the National Program for the Socio-Economic Development of Turkmenistan for 2022-2052, and is promoting the development and construction of the state in every possible way. China and Turkmenistan have similar worldviews, similar goals and conjugated interests.
As part of the state visit of the distinguished President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov, in the presence of the Heads of the two states, documents on cooperation were signed within the framework of the One Belt and One Road initiative in the areas of green development, digital economy, healthcare, culture, sports, information and media, and also on gas cooperation, which is a fruitful result. As the Chinese Ambassador to Turkmenistan, I am ready to make efforts together with my Turkmen colleagues to fully implement the new important agreements reached by the Heads of the two countries, continuously deepen comprehensive strategic cooperation, advance the building of the Chinese-Turkmen community of common destiny, and write a new brilliant chapter in chronicle of Chinese-Turkmen relations of comprehensive strategic partnership. /// nCa, 10 January 2023