Azerbaijan, Baku, 18 January /corr. Trend K.Ramazanova / The Governmental working group of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan on determination of the status of the Caspian Sea will re-establish activity in the first half of February in Baku, the Press Service of Azerbaijan's Foreign Ministry reported on 18 January.
The consultations between the two countries on the Caspian problem were ceased at the end of 1990 during the cooling of the political relations between Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan. The relations between the two countries were re-established after a new president was elected in Turkmenistan. In November 2007 Azerbaijan's representative for Caspian status problem, Khalaf Khalafov, visited Ashgabat for the first time during this period and discussed development of the bilateral relations.
The issue of determining the legal status of the Caspian Sea appeared after collapse of the USSR. Before the USSR collapsed, the Caspian Sea's legal status was based on Soviet-Iranian agreements of 1921 and 1940. Currently, lack of the parameters of delimitation of the oil and gas prospective fields amongst the littoral countries has resulted in the necessity for a new legal status of the Caspian Sea based upon an agreement by all five littoral countries ( Azerbaijan, Russia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Iran).
In November 2003 the Caspian littoral countries signed a framework Convention on protection of the environment of the Caspian Sea.
An agreement on the bordering line of the Caspian Sea was signed between Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Russia in May 2003.
Currently Azerbaijan has difference on Caspian's status with Iran, which requires more territories, as well as with Turkmenistan due to the problem with off-shore field.
The agreement on re-establishment of the talks was reached on 17 January during talks in Ashgabat between Azerbaijan's Deputy Foreign Minister, Khalaf Khalafov and Turkmenistan's Vice Prime Minister and also Foreign Minister, Rashid Meredov, the same source stated.
In addition, the sides highlighted the importance of co-operation between the countries of the Caspian region and realization of economic projects.