Alexander Lukashenko and Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov held talks in Ashgabat March 30. The Belarusian guest was welcomed warmly in the Turkmen land, according to all the rules of a solemn ceremony. In the eastern diplomacy, important matters are addressed in person.
The Heads of State have signed 11 documents.
On the same day, the Belarusian embassy was opened in Ashgabat. On March 31 the heads of state will launch the product of the most ambitious joint project - the Garlyk mining and processing plant.
The leitmotif of the talks was primarily economic. In 2016, the mutual trade between Belarus and Turkmenistan was at $300 million. There are some reserves for growth.
Alexander Lukashenko, President of Belarus:
We have found solution to many issues in trade in this difficult time. I think that moving in this direction, we will still do a lot on the Turkmen land.
Thank you for helping us build the embassy here and open it.
After we opened the Turkmen embassy in Minsk, I see it every day, because I pass it when going to the city residence. A beautiful white marble building, like a spirit of Ashgabat. I want to assure you that we are willing to share with you our experience in education, beginning from primary school to professional staff.
You should know that you have good and reliable friends in the middle of Europe.
Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, President of Turkmenistan:
We have a lot of potential. The most important thing we did is to create an intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation, which is coordinating these matters.
Another export-rich area for Belarus is the IT sector. Our developers have already proven their competitiveness. Leading Belarusian companies have been working in Turkmenistan since 2011.
Oleg Tabanyukhov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus in Turkmenistan:
The two companies are working here, and we will expand the scope of services provided by IT.
One of the main items of Belarusian export is agricultural machines.
Ashgabat can be a convenient springboard for entering the markets of third countries.
We need to identify and select a corridor through which our cargoes could move. Because the president said that in 3-5 years, they will launch the largest petrochemical industry in the form of several (7-10) plants and we will need these products need, including Mogilev's Khimvolokno.
I often hear about the shortage of the products that will be produced here. Let alone cotton, a traditional product, that we can transport to Belarus via these rails and roads. At the same time I want you to think about the fact that you can sell your products from Belarus to the European premium market. I think we should just sit down and look at this matter at our Intergovernmental Commission.
We will provide Turkmenistan with logistics centers, warehouses and equipment.
This all is developing very rapidly now in Belarus. See, what would be profitable for you to sell in Europe. We will determine routes via Baku, Kazakhstan or Russia.
Anatoly Kalinin, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus:
We also offered to open a high-speed train line between Ashgabat and Turkmenbashi, a port city. Our Stadler. We gave them technical offer and the price range.
Today Belarusian universities train about 9,000 Turkmen students.
Igor Karpenko, Minister of Education of the Republic of Belarus:
Turkmen students are represented in almost all state universities. We have already signed 12 agreements, are now six more are being signed. And I think that the cooperation will be expanded. Yesterday we discussed the preparation of teaching staff with the highest qualifications.
The day of talks was productive. Belarus and Turkmenistan signed 11 documents. The presidents signed a joint statement thus reaffirming the policy of long-term partnership.
We actively cooperate in ensuring peace, stability and security in the world, creating favorable conditions for more intensive inter-regional cooperation in various fields. That is, the two countries are building their policy on the principles of good neighborliness, peace and respect for sovereignty. And most importantly non-interference in the internal affairs of other states.
In 2010, the presidents of the two countries started the construction of the mining and processing plant.
This is the biggest export construction project in the history of independent Belarus. Our specialists have built the company on a turnkey basis, with the agreed cost of about $1 billion. Within three years the plant will reach its design capacity.
The current visit is especially significant for us, it is associated with the opening of the new plant, the Garlyk mining and processing plant. It opens a new direction in the development of our friendly Turkmenistan. A new direction, associated with the extraction, processing and sale of goods that are able to bring foreign currency into the country.
It should be recognized that this was not an easy project.
But we overcame all difficulties and together created this innovative production facility in beautiful Turkmenistan. I am sure that the experience of working together, which we received during the creation of this plant, will continue to serve your country.
On March 30, the presidents opened a new building of the Belarusian Embassy. Belarus' neighbors in Ashgabat are now Russia, China, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
The interior of the embassy resembles Belarus. State symbols, storks and tapestries with Belarusian landscapes. By the way, furniture, chandeliers and decor were all ordered in Belarus.
The building of our own embassy buildings confirms the strategic nature of our partnership, it represents the time-tested friendship of Belarusian and Turkmen peoples, which we cherish.
A year ago, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov planted a symbolic fir near the Palace of Independence in the Alley of Honorary Guests in Minsk. On March 30, the two leaders repeated the ritual as a sign of special friendship.
Another point of the official program was a visit to iconic locations. Especially because the Turkmen and Belarusian peoples have common historic past. The memorial "national memory" is dedicated to the victims of the three tragic events in the history of the country. The bloody battle of the 19th century, the earthquake of 1948, which almost erased the city to the ground, and the fallen heroes of the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945).
On March 31, Alexander Lukashenko will take part in the official opening of the Garlyk mining and processing plant.