President: Russian-Turkmen relations develop in spirit of strategic partnership
Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Oct. 31 / Trend H. Hasanov /
The Russian-Turkmen relations are being developed in the spirit of a strategic partnership, said Russian President Vladimir Putin in a letter to his Turkmen counterpart Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
The letter was sent on the occasion of the 22nd anniversary of Turkmenistan's independence currently being celebrated.
'Russian- Turkmen relations based on the good traditions of friendship and mutual respect, are being successfully developed in the spirit of a strategic partnership', the message said. 'I am confident that together we will continue to actively intensify the full range of mutual beneficial bilateral relations'.
According to the Russian president, this meets the fundamental interests of the two fraternal people. It is in line with the stability and security of Central Asia.
Russia is Turkmenistan's largest trading partner. Cooperation has recently intensified with major regions of the Russian Federation including Tatarstan, St. Petersburg, Astrakhan and Sverdlovsk regions.
In total, over 190 enterprises backed by Russian capital implementing over 240 investment projects, were registered in Turkmenistan. Traditional partners are the Vozrozhdenie (Revival), KAMAZ, Itera and Zarubezhneft companies and Siberia Airlines.
One of the strategic directions of the partnership is the gas sector. Turkmenistan transports its gas to Russia through the Central Asia-Centre (Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-Russia) gas pipeline.
At present, however, the Middle Asia - Centre gas pipeline does not fully work. Russia stopped importing Turkmen gas in April 2009 because of an accident. The technical issues were resolved, but under the influence of the global recession in 2010, Russia reduced the purchase up to 10-11 billion cubic meters of gas, or four times less than in 2008.
It is known that the schedule of Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to Turkmenistan is being coordinated through diplomatic channels. It is expected that gas cooperation will be the main issue on the agenda.