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Raşit Meredow


Politics & Diplomacy  I  Leader  I  Turkmenistan 2023

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_BIOGRAPHY He was born on May 30, 1960, in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. He holds a degree in International Relations, having graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) in the 1980s. Following his studies, he began his diplomatic career and has since held various positions within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan.  Meredow has been active in negotiations and discussions related to regional cooperation, energy security, and environmental issues. He has worked to foster diplomatic relations between Turkmenistan and other countries, and he has participated in a number of bilateral and multilateral meetings at the regional and international levels.


Ladies and Gentlemen,


First of all, let me express my gratitude to the French association of entrepreneurs MEDEF-International for the invitation to take part in this important meeting, as well as for its excellent organization.


I warmly welcome all executives and representatives of French companies. I consider such a representative composition of our meeting as evidence of high interest in Turkmenistan and a desire to expand mutually beneficial cooperation.


The main message of today's meeting is «business in dialogue», built on the principles of mutual respect, equality, and awareness of the prospects for «win-win partnership». The dynamically developing economic system, the presence of vast natural resources, favorable geographical location, as well as the foreign economic policy of "open doors" of Turkmenistan, determine the existence of broad prospects for profitable investment.


Having clear guidelines and development priorities, Turkmenistan today is taking tangible steps to achieve strategic goals in the economic sphere. In this regard, I would like to briefly touch upon some priority areas of cooperation between Turkmenistan and French companies:


An important sphere for us is the energy sector, whereas the gas, oil and electric power industries take priority positions. This is where we are focusing on increasing gas production capacities, expanding the production and multi-optional gas transportation infrastructure, which allows us to ensure the supply of Turkmen natural gas to world markets. It should be particularly noted that the European vector has been and remains on the agenda of Turkmenistan's international energy cooperation.


In this context, I would like to reiterate the firm position of Turkmenistan on gas supplies to Europe through the construction and operation of the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline. As you might be aware, we have done a lot for this in the last 15 years, building a systematic partnership with the European Union. We are ready to resume our active contacts with the relevant structures of the European Commission, particular European states and companies in the context of the implementation of major international energy projects.


Another priority for us is the construction of the Turkmenistan­ Afghanistan-Pakistan-lndia (TAPI) gas pipeline. We count on the interested participation of French companies in the above-mentioned and other gas projects of Turkmenistan. Taking this opportunity, I would also like to invite French businesses to consider the possibility of working in oil and gas fields located in the Turkmen sector of the Caspian Sea.


We are ready to continue the bilateral dialogue in the electric power industry. Therefore, we would be grateful for the specific proposals and initiatives of our French partners. At the same time, Turkmenistan pays great attention to the development of such a direction as renewable energy sources. Realizing that "green" energy is the energy of the future, Turkmenistan today is taking a number of practical actions at the national level aimed at promoting projects in the field of solar and wind energy, as well as developing international cooperation in hydrogen energy.


A separate topical issue for us is interaction with foreign companies and international structures in matters of reducing methane emissions, utilization of associated gas at hydrocarbon deposits. I am sure that the knowledge and best practices possessed by French companies in the above areas will be in demand in Turkmenistan. The next area of possible joint efforts is transport and communications. For a number of years, we have been working with French companies that participated in the creation of navigation systems at the airports of Turkmenistan, ensured the delivery of the first cargo aircrafts, discussed in detail issues in the field of communications and ground transport. I would especially like to note the project implemented in 2015 for the construction and launch into space of the first Turkmen satellite.


I am convinced that we are presented with new opportunities for cooperation in transport and communications. To be more precise, we are ready for a substantive discussion with French companies on the creation of a high-speed railway network in Turkmenistan, the supply of aviation equipment and its maintenance, the efficient use of the transport and logistics capabilities of the seaport of Turkmenbashi, the modemization of the communication system and the discovering of new forms of interaction in the field of telecommunications.


In our opinion, the financial and banking sector may soon become one of the significant areas of Turkmen-French cooperation. In this regard, we call on French banks, export credit institutions, insurance organizations to establish and actively develop direct ties with state and commercial banks of Turkmenistan and other financial structures of our country.


Ladies and gentlemen,


As you know, the 21st century is the century of the water problem. Water resources are scarce today in many regions of the world. This is primarily due to global climate change, large-scale and sometimes uncontrolled economic activities of individual countries and their economic entities. Turkmenistan, being a party to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Paris Agreement and other multilateral international acts in the field of environmental protection, is firmly moving towards the fulfillment of its international environmental obligations. In particular, I would like to inform you that our country is implementing comprehensive measures aimed at the conservation and rational use of water resources. We see the implementation of these measures in close cooperation with international organizations and foreign states.


In this context, I suggest French companies to consider the realization of various projects in the water management sector of Turkmenistan. First of all, among them I would note such a mega-project as a comprehensive modernization of the operational infrastructure of the Karakum River (Karakum Canal). The application of water-saving technologies, the supply and use of special equipment, such as dredgers, the concreting of riverbeds and canals in those areas where it is necessary, takes an important place in solving water issues. A separate topic is the drinking water purification in cities and rural areas. The problem of groundwater also remains relevant for us. All of the above-stated and other issues in the water sector could be the subject of future cooperation with French companies having extensive experience in water management issues.


Ladies and gentlemen,


At the beginning of my speech, I emphasized the social orientation of the Turkmen economy. In particular, we pay great attention to medicine and healthcare. For 25 years, dozens of medical institutions fitted with modern medical equipment and advanced technologies in the field of healthcare have been built in Turkmenistan, thousands of highly qualified specialists have been trained. And in this case, we also use the rich experience of our European partners. I call on French companies working in the field of medical equipment production, the pharmaceutical industry, the development and application of telemedicine methods to collaborate with Turkmen partners.


Ladies and gentlemen,


On June 29 this year, the opening of the new city of Arkadag took place in Turkmenistan. lts creation was carried out on the basis of best practices in the field of modern urban studies, as evidenced by dozens of international certificates issued by specialized agencies of the United Nations and other international structures. This is a truly "smart" city, the functioning of which is ensured through the use of new technologies. At the same time, it is also a "green" city, in compliance with the highest international environmental standards. Today we have started the construction of the second stage of the city of Arkadag. One of its significant components should be an industrial cluster. Taking into account the "green" specifics of this city, it is planned to construct several enterprises within its industrial zone, focused on the manufacturing of certain types of products of the medical industry, pharmacy, and child nutrition. With this in mind, we invite interested French companies to cooperate in the creation of the above cluster.


Dear participants,


In my speech, I tried to outline only a few priority areas for the development of trade and economic cooperation between Turkmenistan and France. There are certainly many more of them, and therefore I will be glad if we all together, starting today, make efforts to implement specific projects in the above-mentioned and other areas of bilateral partnership. Along with this, I count on the strong support and greater involvement in these activities of the «MEDEF Association» and its members, as well as the «France­Turkmenistan» Chamber of Commerce.

In conclusion, on behalf of the Turkmen delegation, I want to express my deep gratitude to all the participants of today's meeting for creating excellent conditions for an engaged and constructive dialogue on the further strengthening and development of trade and economic ties between Turkmenistan and France.


Thanks for your attention.

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