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August 2022: following the course of foreign policy initiatives of the head of state

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A large number of working meetings, negotiations, political consultations, international forums, seminars, exhibitions, cultural and other events that took place in our Homeland last month in the context of the open door policy, being successfully implemented under the leadership of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, were another illustration of the commitment of Independent Neutral Turkmenistan to a broad interstate dialogue for general wellbeing, security and sustainable development.

On August 1, the Avaza National Tourist Zone hosted a meeting with Secretary General of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf Nayef Falah Mubarak Al-Hajraf, during which the importance of strengthening a fruitful partnership, as well as the prospects for further development of relations between Turkmenistan and the Council both on bilateral and multilateral basis, and cooperation in the field of transport, logistics and energy, and increase in mutual trade, was emphasized.

As part of the meeting, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and the General Secretariat of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the consultation arrangements.

On August 5, a meeting was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the People’s Republic of China to Turkmenistan Qian Naicheng, at which a wide range of issues related to further development of Turkmen-Chinese relations were discussed.

On August 6-7, on the Day of Workers in the Construction and Industrial Complex, the relevant ministries and departments, as well as the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the country organized the International Exhibition “Construction, Industry, Power Engineering of Turkmenistan-2022” in the capital, and a scientific conference within its framework.

The goal of the specialized forum was to promote development of the construction, industrial and energy sectors, the chemical industry, road construction, as well as to show the huge capacity and capabilities of domestic producers, equipment, the latest technology and services to foreign participants.

At a scientific conference “Development of Construction, Industry and Energy Sectors in Turkmenistan”, held as part of the International Exhibition, the heads of ministries and sectoral departments, representatives of business communities of the country, specialists of companies and enterprises of a number of foreign states made their proposals both in the traditional pattern and online.

On August 12, the Avaza NTZ hosted the Scientific-Practical Conference “The Caspian Sea – the Sea of Friendship and Harmony, timed to coincide with the Day of the Caspian Sea annually celebrated by the Caspian countries that was attended by the heads and specialists of relevant ministries and sectoral departments of the country, scientists, and representatives of the embassies of the Caspian states accredited in Turkmenistan, authoritative organizations such as the Office of the UN Resident Coordinator, the UN Development Program, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the European Union.

The speakers highlighted the basic areas and results of the systematic work carried out by Turkmenistan in the field of environment preservation, conservation of the biodiversity of the unique natural reservoir, prevention of its pollution, rational use of its resources, and compliance with environmental standards.

As was emphasized, the Caspian Sea is an important component of many international projects aimed at improving the peoples’ welfare in the region, the effectiveness of five-party collaboration mechanisms and finding new patterns of dialogue, as well as establishing cooperation in the conservation, reproduction and use of biological resources, merchant shipping, tourism development, as well as the development and use of Caspian Sea sub-bottom hydrocarbon resources.

On August 14, within the framework of the International Transport Ministers Level Conference of the landlocked developing countries, a number of thematic sectoral exhibitions were held, demonstrating the success of Turkmenistan in the transport complex and logistics, and a wide range of modern services offered.

On the same day, during meetings with the heads of delegations of foreign countries and representatives of a number of authoritative organizations, issues related to strengthening traditional partnerships were discussed, taking into account long-term plans to create new and expand operating transport corridors that will expand economic relations on the regional and global scales.

During the transport forum on August 15, a meeting was held with Minister of Energy and Infrastructure of the United Arab Emirates Suhail Al Mazroui to discuss the opportunities for establishing transport and logistics routes between the ports of Turkmenbashi, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the integration of the Turkmen seaport into the world system of ports. Trade, economic and investment partnerships, bilateral cooperation in the fields of energy, transport and textile industry were highlighted.

Particular attention was paid to the issues of water desalination, desertification, environment preservation, strengthening cooperation with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) headquartered in Masdar, UAE.

The International Conference of Transport Ministers of Landlocked Developing Countries on the theme “Ashgabat Process: Funding for Better Connectivity” that took place at the Congress Center of the Avaza National Tourist Zone on August 15–16, organized on the initiative of Turkmenistan under the auspices of the United Nations, was attended by delegations from more than 30 states, dozens of reputable foreign organizations and financial institutions, members of the Government of the country, heads and representatives of a number of ministries and sectoral departments, representatives of the private sector, non-governmental associations, and scientific communities.

The main goal of the hybrid forum was to analyze the progress made by landlocked developing countries (LDCs) in the field of transport and related SDGs, determine the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and other challenges, the key role of transport in restoring interconnections in the post-COVID-19 period, climate change mitigation and adaptation.

At the end of the forum, the Final Statement of the International Conference of Transport Ministers of Landlocked Developing Countries was adopted.

As part of the Conference a meeting of transport ministers was held on August 16 in the format “Central Asia - the Middle East - Africa: opportunities for cooperation in the transport sector”, which discussed mechanisms for expanding interstate partnerships, implementing projects to create a modern transport infrastructure in order to establish transport connectivity in developing countries, landlocked and transit states.

A Memorandum of Understanding was adopted based on the results of the 2nd meeting of the Steering Board on the creation of an international transport and transit corridor, which took place on the same day.

Representatives of our country also met with members of foreign delegations to sign a number of documents such as the Agreement between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the Republic of Moldova on international motor transport services; Memorandum of Understanding between the Transport and Communications Agency under the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan and the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation; Memorandum of Understanding between the “Türkmendeňizderýaýollary” Agency of the Transport and Communications Agency under the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan and the Maritime Transport Agency of Georgia.

On August 17, the the “Berkarar” Hotel in the Avaza NTZ hosted a ceremony in a hybrid format to launch the Global Transit Document (GTrD) Pilot Project, which is a universal digital solution in development of multimodal transportation and the result of fruitful cooperation between the Permanent Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Commission of the International Transport Corridor Europe-Caucasus-Asia (TRACECA), the International Center for Transport Diplomacy, the Intergovernmental Council of CIS Road Authorities, the world’s largest developers of IT technologies, and with countries that have shown interest in the pilot application of GTrD.

As was noted, the implementation of the international transport corridor digital concept will create a regional digital system that combines various modes of transport, as well as ensure the maximum facilitation and digitalization of border crossing, transit and trade procedures for a sustainable and stable recovery in the post-pandemic period.

Expressing their unanimous readiness to develop a Plan of Practical Actions for the Implementation of the Pilot Project of the Global Transit Document in 2022-2024, the participants adopted a Joint Statement in which they confirmed the willingness of the parties for further partnership in promoting the proposal to create a global digital transit network at various levels, as well as within the United Nations.

The media forum held in a conference hall of the State Committee on Television, Radio Broadcasting and Cinematography on August 22 covered the outcomes of the International Conference, which was attended by heads and representatives of specialized agencies, television and radio channels, the State News Agency, editors of newspapers and magazines, foreign media accredited in Turkmenistan, as well as journalists from the world’s leading news agencies who joined via a videoconferencing system.

The main goal of the media forum was to highlight the role of the media in further strengthening cooperation. As was emphasized, the materials of the Conference, which aroused great international interest, were promptly and in detail covered and published in the press, posted on Internet portals, and its meetings were broadcast live on the United Nations web television channel in its four official languages - English, French, Spanish and Russian.

It was highlighted that the domestic media is faced with the challenge of more actively dissemination in the global space of prompt and reliable news about Turkmenistan, the transformations taking place in the country, its successes and achievements, progress in studying the best world experience, its creative development in the context of the emergence of new types and standards of broadcasting, printing, and electronic press.

Issues of further expansion of political, trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian partnership were discussed during the bilateral meetings at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on August 23 with newly appointed Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Romania Ion Naval and newly appointed Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Federal Republic of Germany to Turkmenistan Michael Uwe Bierhoff.

The diplomats stressed the positive experience of relations, as well as the importance of mutual support for initiatives within the authoritative regional and international organizations, primarily UN.

On August 25, an online meeting was held between representatives of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and the multi-type Private Clinic “Lugman Hakim Complex Hospital” in the city of Herat (Afghanistan), during which the topics of developing cooperation in the field of healthcare and exchanging experience in the field of transplantology were discussed.

Special emphasis was on the importance of collaboration between the relevant ministries and departments of the two countries in the political, diplomatic, trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian areas at the Turkmen-Uzbek inter-MFA consultations on August 26 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the participation of the delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan that arrived in Turkmenistan.

A relevant document was signed based on the negotiations result.

As part of a telephone conversation with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Qatar Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani on August 30, an exchange of views took place on a wide range of issues of bilateral relations between the countries.

In this context, the Foreign Ministers discussed the possibilities of organizing an official visit of the President of Turkmenistan to the State of Qatar.

Emphasis was placed on the importance of the activities of the Joint Intergovernmental Turkmen-Qatari Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation and the third meeting thereof in the near future.

Thus, the presented review of the events of the last month of summer has become a clear illustration of the large-scale work consistently carried out by the state to implement the constructive foreign policy and important international initiatives of the President of Turkmenistan, which are supported throughout the world, and are aimed at maximizing socialization and use of the wide-ranging potential of our Independent Neutral Homeland.