Wed 21-10-2020 21:13 PM
ABU DHABI, 21st October, 2020 (WAM) -- H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, led the UAE's participation in the third round of UAE-Turkmenistan Joint Committee, which convened on October 14th-21st via video conference. Rashid Meridov, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, represented his country's in the session.
Addressing the committee, the UAE top diplomat said: "I would foremost like to thank you and the Turkmen delegation for participating in the third round of the UAE-Turkmenistan Joint Committee.
The convening of this Joint Committee, testifies to the deep bonds of friendship that exist between our two countries’ leaderships and peoples. It complements the bilateral efforts and the continuous meetings that brought us together during the last period, and underlines both sides’ keenness to enhance mutual cooperation and promote bilateral relations in various sectors of common interest. "
H.H. Sheikh Abdullah added that the bilateral relations between the two nations have witnessed "remarkable development since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries 25 years ago, which paved the way for the launch of bilateral political, economic, cultural and development cooperation.'' "Our strong relationship has been embodied by high-level visits, such as the visit of His Excellency President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov to the UAE in March 2018, and the visit of your Excellency to the country in November 2019. Furthermore, I would like to commend the outcomes achieved from the fifth round of the Political Consultations that were held via video conference in May 2020."
Sheikh Abdullah reiterated the UAE's determination to "continuing cooperation and consultation with Turkmenistan on matters of common interest, which will serve the interests and aspirations of the friendly Emirati-Turkmen people towards development and prosperity.
"I also call on both sides to enhance coordination on combating extremism and its drawbacks, strengthening human relations, as well as encouraging and spreading tolerance and coexistence."
He noted the steady improvement in the economic relations between the two countries over recent years. "In particular, the bilateral non-oil trade between the two countries reached $279 million in 2019. This progress provides further motivation for both sides to expand bilateral trade relations over the coming years, especially in the basic mineral sectors, petrochemical industries, and agricultural and food products."
He also stressed the importance of promoting mutual investments. "Hence, I would like to refer to the Emirati-Turkmen Business Council’s first virtual meeting, which was held in August 2020. It aimed to examine opportunities for promising economic partnerships, as the Council discussed ways to expand trade exchanges, and overcome the various challenges facing the private sector and the business community in both countries. I call on both sides to enhance cooperation through this platform to increase the volume of mutual investments, mainly in respect to both countries’ economic priorities in the fields of oil and gas, renewable energy, food and agricultural production, logistics and transportation."
Sheikh Abdullah highlighted the "exceptional importance of the food security sector in both of our economies. I encourage our food security sector entities to further strengthen coordination on increasing food trade between the two sides, as well as explore direct investment opportunities in the agricultural technology sector and agricultural assets."
In respect to international organisations, Sheikh Abdullah called on the two sides to enhance their coordination within multilateral organisations and international institutions.
Sheikh Abdullah concluded by commending the outcomes of the Committee's work, and thanked all the participants for their efforts during the preparatory meetings. "I call upon both sides to follow up on these outcomes, and to move forward in implementing the bilateral initiatives aimed at strengthening our relations."
For his part, the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, expressed sincere gratitude to the UAE for organising and ensuring the success of the committee's meetings. "We are celebrating today the 25th anniversary of the UAE-Turkmen relations. And I'd like to congratulate you all on this occasion."
He highlighted the high-level talks between the leaders of the two countries which, he said, played a pivotal role in enhancing bilateral relations and driving their cooperation. He mentioned in this regard the two phone calls the President of Turkmenistan had with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on July 25th.
"The political relations between the UAE and Turkmenistan are based on 49 bilateral agreements and other documents," he said, adding that the consultations between the foreign ministries of the two nations further enhance these relations. The minister highlighted his meeting with H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan on June 22 via video conference, which, he said, resulted in positive outcomes. "I thank the UAE for its support to Turkmenistan in the fields of peace, security, sustainable energy and transportation."
He stressed on the threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to the entire world. "Due to this threat Turkmenistan is calling for intensifying international cooperation to combat this virus." He pointed to the comprehensive measures taken by his country to stem the impact of the pandemic.
The minister praised the UAE's COVID-19 countermeasures and its efforts to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the regional and international levels, commending the support provided by the UAE, which, he said, reaffirms the robust fraternal relations between the two nations.
The two top diplomats of the two countries signed the minutes of meeting of the 3rd round of the UAE-Turkmenistan Joint Committee which ran over eight days.
Attending the virtual meeting were Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, Minister of State, and Abdulnasser Alshaali, Assistant Minister for Economic and Trade Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation along with a number of executives from both countries..