Jan 22, 2015
Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, met with Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, Turkmenistan President.
In this meeting that took place in Turkmenistan Presidential Palace, peace and stability in Afghanistan, bilateral cooperation in the areas of economics, trade, power, transit, cultural and human rights, and regional and global issues were the topics discussed between the leaders of the two countries.
Welcoming President Ghani to Turkmenistan, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said that his country supports any efforts to maintain peace and security in Afghanistan, and ensured of Turkmenistan’s enduring cooperation with Afghanistan.
Speaking on the need of trade and economic active relations between the two countries, the Turkmen President expressed preparedness to, where proper circumstances and facilities are available, increase the amount of electricity export to Afghanistan up to 500MW.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov continued, “Prosperity of the two nations is the objective behind enhancing bilateral relations. Last year’s trade turnover between Turkmenistan and Afghanistan exceeded US$1 billion, and we want to double this figure in 2015.”
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov further stated that his government will fund the construction of a maternity hospital in Torghondi of Herat, an orphanage in Shebirghan, and two mosques with capacity of thousands people each in Andkhoi and Aqina of Faryab province.
In return, President Ghani thanked for Turkmenistan support and cooperation with Afghanistan and said, “Turkmenistan is and continues to be a good and benevolent neighboring country of Afghanistan.”
President Ghani stated that Afghanistan is ready to ensure Turkmen gas transit through Afghanistan. “Besides transiting Turkmenistan’s gas to Pakistan and India, we hope to serve as a transit state for China as well”, added President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani.
President Ghani Attached high importance to the railway project by completion of which, Turkmenistan will be linked to Afghanistan, Tajikistan and China.
The Afghanistan President also expressed enthusiasm over linking Turkmenistan, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan via railway.
“Afghanistan is willing to import electricity from Turkmenistan, and we want to function as the center of power export to South Asia. Meanwhile, Afghanistan is eager to transit Turkmenistan’s energy to Tajikistan and China by way of its territory”, President Ghani added.
Calling Turkmenistan’s liquid gas valuable for Afghanistan, President Ghani said that Turkmenistan and Afghanistan’s development is interconnected that makes the two countries further expand their economic ties.
Speaking on the natural resources Turkmenistan and Afghanistan are enriched with, the Afghan President urged on cooperation between the two countries as a tool contributing to removal of poverty and securing the human rights in the region.
Highlighting the carpet weaving as a sign of cultural relation between Turkmenistan and Afghanistan, President Ghani recalled the skills of Afghanistan’s Turkmen women in this field, and sought for the relevant cooperation between the two nations.
At the end of the meeting, the relevant authorities signed the bilateral cooperation agreements in presence of the two countries’ Presidents. The agreements signed included cooperation in the sectors of sport, power, and diplomacy.
The Joint Statement of Afghanistan and Turkmenistan was also signed by Afghanistan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
Following the meeting and signing the agreements, the two Presidents showed up press availability where they described their meeting invaluable for present and future of their countries.