On 5 May 2023, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, at the invitation of the British side, left for a working visit to the UK, where he will take part in the coronation ceremony of the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Charles III and his wife, the Queen Consort.
At the capital’s International Airport, the head of state was seen off by the officials.
The participation of the President of Turkmenistan in the upcoming celebrations on the occasion of the accession of the new British monarch to power is another clear evidence of the steadily developing friendly and mutually respectful bilateral ties. The first visit of Head of State Serdar Berdimuhamedov to England confirms the great importance attached by both countries to the strengthening of productive contacts.
In the conversation of the President of Turkmenistan with the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to our country, Ms. Lucia Wilde, held in the Ashgabat air harbor, the effective nature of the partnership, which has broad prospects for the further development of mutually beneficial contacts in various fields, was noted with satisfaction. Particular emphasis is placed on the desire of the parties to give a qualitatively new content to long-term cooperation.
Wishing the head of state Serdar Berdimuhamedov a successful visit, the diplomat stressed that the participation of the President of Turkmenistan in the upcoming event on the occasion of the coronation of King Charles III, becoming a significant event in the history of interstate dialogue, would give a positive impetus to strengthening bilateral ties.
… Some time later, the presidential airliner landed at Stansted International Airport in London.
At the airport, the head of Turkmenistan was warmly and cordially welcomed by the special representative of the King of Great Britain Charles Anderson, the British Prime Minister’s envoy for trade in Turkmenistan Baroness Emma Nicholson and other officials.
From the airport, the motorcade of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov headed to the residence assigned to him for the duration of the visit, located in the fashionable The Biltmore Mayfair hotel.
In the afternoon, the head of Turkmenistan went to Buckingham Palace.
At the main entrance of the residence of the British monarchs, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov was warmly welcomed by officials.
During the official reception, the President of Turkmenistan cordially congratulated the King of the United Kingdom Charles III on behalf of the people and the Government of Turkmenistan, as well as on his own behalf, expressing his firm confidence that cooperation between the two countries would continue to develop actively, addressing his best wishes.
In turn, King Charles III of the United Kingdom said that he recalls his visit to our country with pleasant feelings and, noting that the cooperation established between Great Britain and Turkmenistan would be further developed, expressed his best wishes to the President of Turkmenistan and the Turkmen people.
At the end of the event, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov went to the residence assigned to him during his working visit.
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It should be noted that Great Britain, with which diplomatic relations were established in January 1992, is among the important partners of our country. At the same time, England actively supported the UN Resolution on the permanent neutrality of the Turkmen state in December 1995 at the 50th session of the UN General Assembly, supports the peaceful foreign policy of our country and put forward creative initiatives aimed at solving the pressing problems of our time.
The visits of members of the royal family to Ashgabat serve as confirmation of the great attention of Great Britain to Turkmenistan. So, in 1996, Charles, Prince of Wales paid an official visit to our country, and in November 2013, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, took part in the International Exhibition and Conference “International Cooperation in the Oil and Gas Industry of Turkmenistan: Potential, Achievements, Priorities”.
The great interest of the British side in strengthening interstate dialogue is also evidenced by the visits of high-ranking officials to Turkmenistan in recent years, in particular, the Senior Minister of State of the British Foreign Office Tobias Elwood, the Prime Minister’s Envoy for Trade, MP Charles Hendry, the Special Envoy of the British Prime Minister for issues of trade in Turkmenistan by Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterbourne, co-chairman of the Turkmen-British Council of Commerce and Industry Ronald Nash and others.
Today, interaction between our countries is based on mutual respect, trust and common positions on topical issues on the international agenda. Our states have common interests in politics, economics and the humanitarian field. Among the priority vectors of cooperation, official London and Ashgabat identified the fuel and energy sector, trade and banking, construction, development of transport and communication infrastructure, the introduction of new technologies, tourism, sports, culture, science, education, healthcare.
The UK is one of the leaders in European trade and major financial centers, which opens up great opportunities for building up productive Turkmen-British contacts. England is showing a desire to strengthen dialogue with our country, which has an impressive resource and economic potential and demonstrates stable development dynamics.
The activity of the Turkmen-British Trade and Industry Council makes a great contribution to the intensification of interstate cooperation, within which the main directions and areas of joint work are determined. To expand this interaction, as noted above, there are all conditions, including the favorable investment climate created in the Turkmen market, ensuring financial and social stability.
In recent years, Turkmenistan has been actively pursuing a policy of diversifying the economy, its transition to market relations. As a result of the comprehensive measures being taken, the share of the non-hydrocarbon and non-state sectors in the structure of GDP is increasing. Large-scale reforms and transformations in various areas are systematically implemented, effective steps are being taken to maintain investment activity, strengthen import substitution processes and increase exports.
The course towards radical modernization of the country’s economy, taken by the National Leader of the Turkmen people and successfully continuing today under the leadership of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, led to the expansion of mutually beneficial partnerships with foreign countries. At the same time, the key guidelines are the introduction of advanced technologies and high-tech equipment, the creation of innovative industries, and digitalization. And here, cooperation with the UK, which is a major exporter of high technologies, goods and capital, as well as with leading British companies with solid experience in these areas, finds concrete practical application in Turkmenistan.
The investment policy pursued by the Government of our country provides all the economic, social and legal conditions for the systematic expansion of multifaceted business contacts with foreign partners, including business circles in England. One of the key vectors of the Turkmen-British cooperation is the fuel and energy sector. Having a colossal hydrocarbon potential, our state is in favor of optimizing international cooperation in the fuel and energy sector, making an effective contribution to ensuring regional and global energy security.
Among the main areas of partnership are the chemical industry, textile and light industry, whose enterprises produce various types of products, the import of which is of great interest to the UK.
Among the important aspects of the Turkmen-British cooperation is the transport and communications sector, which is a key factor in global sustainable development that directly affects the stability and balance of trade and economic relations. In this area, our country, implementing large-scale projects together with foreign partners, makes a significant contribution to the formation of a combined transport and transit infrastructure on a regional and transcontinental scale. In this segment, great prospects for partnership open up for Turkmenistan and the UK, especially taking into account the logistics capabilities of the Turkmenbashi International Seaport.
During the meetings of the Turkmen-British Trade and Industry Council, the continued interest of representatives of the business circles of England in the further development of trade and economic cooperation and the establishment of close business contacts with our country was repeatedly confirmed.
Relations in the humanitarian sphere are also characterized by a high level of interaction. British Universities Strathclyde, Bournemouth, Coventry, University. Harriot and Watt, within the framework of the TEMPUS program of the European Union, implemented a number of projects to assist Turkmen specialists in the development of curricula and methods for studying and teaching foreign languages, and improving the practice of translation.
Fruitful cooperation has developed in the field of training for tourism and sports, as well as for agriculture and the banking sector. The result of joint efforts was the implementation of dozens of programs.
In the scientific field, an example of a successful partnership is the work of Turkmen specialists together with the UNESCO office in Ashgabat and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds of Great Britain to nominate the Koytendag and Badkhyz state natural reserves to the World Natural Heritage List.
Historical monuments, the unique cultural heritage of our people annually attract hundreds of English tourists to Turkmenistan. Supporting the interest of the British in our country, the Embassy of Turkmenistan in the UK organizes various events that introduce the history, traditions and achievements of our state.
The development of bilateral cooperation in the field of sports is of great importance. In this context, the participation of leading British companies in the preparation and organization of the V Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games that were successfully held in Ashgabat in 2017 should be noted.
The development of inter-parliamentary ties is an integral factor in strengthening the relations of friendship and partnership between the two countries. In this context, it should be noted that the Mejlis of Turkmenistan and the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation.
More than thirty years of history of relations between independent Turkmenistan and Great Britain have opened many interesting pages of history, culture and traditions to the peoples of our countries. Long-term cooperation in various fields has clearly confirmed that our countries recognize each other as reliable and responsible partners. And the addition of joint efforts and the existing investment opportunities of the two states will continue to serve the development of national economies, cultural and humanitarian contacts.
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On 6 May 2023, the president of Turkmenistan participated in the coronation ceremony of King Charles III. /// TDH, 5-6 May