Turkmen President’s Visit in Astana Helps Strengthen Cooperation
President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov and President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev discussed bilateral relations during Berdymukhamedov’s April 18–19 visit to Astana. His visit corresponded with the 25th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations two countries.
Nazarbayev congratulated Berdymukhamedov on his recent re-election during their meeting in the Akorda presidential residence.
“We highly appreciate your decision to pay one of your first visits after the election to our country. Kazakh and Turkmen people are bound by ties of partnership, neighbourhood and fraternity. For a quarter of a century, our relations have been developing on a foundation of mutual trust and support. Turkmenistan is an important partner and ally of Kazakhstan in the region. Our peoples are brothers and good neighbours to each other,” said Nazarbayev.
Nazarbayev noted the development of bilateral cooperation in energy, transit and transport. He also underlined other areas for collaboration.
“Today we are signing the most important agreement concerning the strategic partnership between Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. This agreement will serve as a basis for further effective cooperation between our countries. We are solving all border issues. We will be two countries that do not have any border problems,” he said.
Berdymukhamedov said his visit will strengthen bilateral cooperation.
The two presidents discussed regional and international cooperation, as well as cultural, humanitarian and social cooperation.
Nazarbayev said that the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation under the chairmanship of the two countries’ deputy prime ministers will help bilateral cooperation.
The parties also discussed improving the legal framework for cooperation and attracting businesses to large joint infrastructure projects.
“The launch of the Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran railway is a historic event in the field of transit and transport cooperation. Kazakh and Turkmen entrepreneurs should use this advantage to strengthen mutual trade turnover,” Nazarbayev stressed.
Water and energy issues, as well as activation of the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea, were also discussed.
“We once again confirmed that the water resources of the trans-boundary rivers of Central Asia are a common asset. The fate of millions of people depends on their reasonable use. This year, Turkmenistan chairs the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea,” he said.
The parties signed agreements pertaining to strategic cooperation, demarcation of the Kazakh-Turkmen state border, the Kazakh-Turkmen Intergovernmental Commission and mutual protection of confidential information.
The parties also signed the programme of cooperation between the two countries’ foreign ministries for 2017-2018, an agreement to establish winning relations between Astana and Ashgabat, a cooperation agreement between the finance ministries and an agreement on cooperation between the Kazakhstan National Chamber of Entrepreneurs and the Turkmenistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
At the end of their meeting, Nazarbayev awarded Berdymukhamedov the highest award for foreign leaders, the Order of Dostyk (Friendship) of Kazakhstan, for his contribution to securing friendship and understanding between the two countries.
Following the official meeting at the Akorda, Berdymukhamedov personally presented three of his books devoted to the famous Turkmen breed of horses, the Akhalteke, issued in the Kazakh language for the first time, Kazinform reported.
“I am doubly pleased because the presentation of my books coincides with my state visit to your beautiful country. We have been good neighbours and brothers over the centuries. ... Our peoples highly honour racehorses and treat them as family members. We have this in common. There is a saying ‘Waking up in the morning, greet your father and then your horse’,” Berdymukhamedov said.
The Turkmen leader was also given a tour of the National Museum of the Republic of Kazakhstan.