Turkmen president's visit to Uzbekistan shows improved bilateral cooperation

Turkmen president's visit to Uzbekistan shows improved bilateral cooperation

Azerbaijan, Baku, May 4 / Trend V. Zhavoronkova /

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov's visit to Uzbekistan testifies to the fact that the countries are strongly intensifying their bilateral cooperation, a Russian expert on Central Asia said.

"Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan continue cooperating to strengthen bilateral relations," Senior Fellow at the Institute of International Studies at the Russian Foreign Ministry's Moscow State Institute of the International Relations Leonid Gusev told Trend via e-mail.
Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov plans to pay the official visit to Uzbekistan on May 5- 6, a government source told Trend.

About 11 high-level visits, including six visits by the Turkmen president to Uzbekistan and five visits of the Uzbek president to Turkmenistan, have been held since 1991. The legal basis was laid to develop bilateral cooperation in various spheres.

The expert said this visit is a sign of the sides' commitment to strengthen bilateral cooperation.

He said that one key issue to be discussed during Berdimuhamedov's visit is security.
"I think the situation in Afghanistan will be the main issue related to regional security," he said.

Regarding the bilateral cooperation, the parties will likely discuss the water and energy issues in Central Asia. Both countries share common positions on these issues, he said.
He said the two presidents will discuss the activity of the transnational gas pipeline Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-China. It diversified the export routes of hydrocarbons.

The negotiations are also expected to be held to promote the agreement signed in Ashgabat on the formation of a new international transport-communication corridor Uzbekistan-Turkmenistan-Iran-Oman-Qatar, he said.

The agreement on the development of the transport-communication corridor was reached during Uzbek President Islam Karimov's official visit to Turkmenistan in October 2010.

The sides are expected to discuss the issues of humanitarian cooperation, Gusev said.

According to the Uzbek Foreign Economic Relations and Trade Ministry, there are four joint ventures with Turkmen capital in Uzbekistan, rendering construction services and producing building materials. Five enterprises, established with the participation of Uzbek residents, work in Turkmenistan.

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