Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan to develop free trade agreement

Business Materials 26 February 2009 14:43 (UTC +04:00)

Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Feb. 26 / Trend , E.Hasanov/

Turkmen and Uzbek Presidents Gurbangulu Berdimuhammedov and Islam Karimov agreed to sign an intergovernmental free trade agreement, the Turkmen media reported on Feb. 26.

"The parties reached an agreement to establish a free trade document," the Altin Asir national television channel quoted the Uzbek leader as saying.

"We have all the necessary preconditions to implement our plans. We will continue actions in this direction," Karimov said. He noted that the process of forming a free market will occur gradually. Karimov also emphasized the role of the Turkmen-Uzbek cooperation commission.

Karimov said goods turnover between the two countries increased 50 percent in past years.

"Due to the global financial crisis, we agreed to expand interaction by forming new markets in our countries to sell Turkmen and Uzbek products," the Uzbek president said.

Karimov added that there are many such opportunities. A recent business exhibition in Uzbekistan demonstrates this fact, he said.

"The exhibition showed Turkmen goods to Uzbek businesses," he said. "Uzbekistan considers Turkmenistan as more than just a friend. The world is experiencing a difficult time. Cooperation is important and must be strengthened throughout the region."

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