Transport sphere: Algorithm of cooperation between Caspian states

First Caspian Economic Forum will be held in Turkmenistan by the initiative of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov this year. This meeting is to be an important step in the implementation of the agreements and further strengthening of regional cooperation in the context of the Convention on Legal Status of Caspian Sea signed by the heads of five caspina states, which was true historical event.

Preparation to coming forum, planned to be held on August 12, 2019, the anniversary of the adoption of the above-mentioned Convention at the fifth Caspian Summit, is carried out at present time. The agenda will cover wide range of subjects, which will make the base of perspective directions of cooperation of participating states.

Transport sphere serves as an important connecting link in building of constructive and fruitful relations between the countries of Caspian region, which are developed in the spirit of friendship and goodwill, respect of each other interests, Turkmen leader Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov mentions. Favourable geographic location between Europe and Asia is advantage of our countries, which opens wide capabilities in transit transportation and in provision of logistic services.

Each of the country today implements big projects for creation of modern infrastructure of sea, motor, railway and air transportation of passengers and cargo. Activation of existing transcontinental routes and formation of new international corridors running across Caspian Sea will provide the conditions for further dynamic social and economic development of neighbouring states, will enhance their investment attractiveness, will support the improvement of regional and interregional trade and economic, cultural and humanitarian and tourist relations.

Caspian basin is an important strategic region having huge economic, energy and transport potential, which implementation meets the goals of common prosperity. It provides special significance for establishment of coordinated international cooperation, which is based on legal standards, mutual respect and interests of coastal countries.

As is known, Turkmenistan initiated the first Summit of the heads of Caspian states, which was held in Ashgabat in 2002. The dialog, started in Turkmen capital received deserved continuation; its results were laid in the foundation of important decisions taken at the Summits in Teheran, Baku and Astrakhan in 2007, 2010 and 2014 respectively.

Speaking at these meetings, Turkmen leader confirmed that Turkmenistan would always take an active position in the subjects of Caspian Sea for provision of peace, security and stability in the region, strengthening of friendship, goodwill and wide cooperation between coastal states and their nations, which are united by centuries-old historical and cultural links.

The President of Turkmenistan made proposals on preparation of two new agreements at the Astrakhan Summit. These are the agreements in transport sphere and trade and economic cooperation in Caspian Sea as well as on the institution of Caspian Economic Forum.

For all these years, our country is the place of regular meeting and international conferences on Caspian Sea subjects, where geographic specification prejudges the main goals of foeign strategy of Turkmen state.

Creative initiatives of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, proposed during previous Caspian Summits as well as at the United Nations General Assembly, the Rio+20 Global UN Conference and other big forums are undisputable confirmation of the commitment of our country to the course toward efficient international cooperation. It includes the proposals on the development of cooperation in Central Asia and Caspian basin in transport sphere.

Implementation of transnational Kazakhstan – Turkmenistan – Iran railway, which is to be an integral component of regional and international transport infrastructure, is an example of successful consolidation of efforts of neighbouring states. The Leader of the Nation mentions that the territories of Caspian states are natural geographic space connecting Asia and Europe and providing efficient operation of transit, transport and trade corridors and optimization of cargo flows in the East – west and North – South directions.

In this context, opening of Turkmenbashy International Seaport has become a remarkable event. Full involvement of its capabilities bring Caspian states to new level of the partnership supporting their integration to international system of economic relations, enhancement of the role of Turkmenistan in the system of multimodal connections of the continent.

At present, our state builds transport corridors expanding the networks of roads and railways, air and sea routes supporting the strengthening of universal peace and stable economic progress in the region. These are real measures for the revival of the Silk Road in modern format. Navigation and port management, which significantly increase the capabilities for the growth of cargo traffic in Eurasian space, perform important functions in this case.

Advanced infrastructure of Turkmenbashy International Seaport is able to satisfy not only existing but also perspective demand on qualitative proposals and high-class service. The entry of the Port to full operational capacity will lead to strategic changes in logistic chains of continental cargo transportation, which important hub will be Turkmen transhipment terminals as the most optimal for the shortest and most beneficial routes.

Turkmenbashy Port has ferry, passenger and container terminals, Balkan shipyard, numerous port infrastructure including motor roads with flyover interchanges and railways.

The Port also provides the storage of refrigerator containers; it has warehouses of more than 9,000 square meters. Multimodal logistic park is able to provide the complex of services for storage and combined processing of container cargoes delivered by air, roads and railways providing their loading to vessels and back.

The container terminal has satellite control system with display of all current information on the monitors of operators and meet the Container Terminal Quality Indicator standard.

New port will also provide the growth of tourist flows to Turkmen resort of Avaza, espciallu from Caspian states. The tourist will be met by fashionable hotels and comfortable cottage complexes with high-class service, super modern sport facilities and developed resport infrastructure.

Therefore, Turkmenistan makes big contribution to the expansion of international cooperation in transport and communication section, which is an important segment of the world economy. Having big potential in this field, our country initiates number of big international and regional projects.

Implementation of these projects will bring economic and trade cooperation between Central Asian countries and neighbouring regions to new level, will give the impulse to the development of interregional relations in future, will make the foundation of the architecture of new geographic and economic space uniting Central Asia, Caspian, Baltic and Black Sea regions, Near and Middle East, South and Southeast Asia.

Undoubtedly, coming first Caspian Economic Forum will give strong impulse to turning of Caspian Sea into one of the largest transport and transit hub of international importance playing an important role in the formation of new geographic economic space in Eurasia and meeting modern global trends.