Turkmenistan held a regional dialogue on transport in the conditions of COVID-19

Turkmenistan held a regional dialogue on transport in the conditions of COVID-19

The regional dialogue of high level organized by the government of Turkmenistan in close cooperation with the United Nations and its regional commissions, other specialized agencies, took place on Tuesday in a videoconference format.

The dialogue theme – «Strengthening of transport connectivity in the region of SPECA and beyond it during COVID-19». United Nations Under-Secretary-General Fekitamoeloa ‘Utoikamanu , United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Olga Algaerova took part In the forum, heads and responsible representatives of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), United Nations Development Coordination Office.

To participation in the regional dialogue were invited the minister of public works of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, deputy ministers of transport of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

Multilateral transport interaction is especially actual during the period of coronavirus pandemic when before the economies of Central Asia and neighbouring regions there was a severe need of adaptation to new difficult conditions in the market. New international legal mechanisms which can ensure functioning of transport systems in extreme conditions are for this purpose necessary also.

Transport diplomacy of Turkmenistan is aimed at realisation of huge transit potential of the country allowing it to become by a hub of continental and intercontinental value. The importance of this purpose defines steps which Turkmenistan undertakes for development of the transport system.

Lately the work on intensification of transport-communication complex, it digitalization and integration into regional and global networks considerably became more active. The park of vehicles is constantly updated.

So, with a view of increase of competitiveness of domestic merchant marine fleet, realisation of innovative projects of marine transport modern ships were purchased. Within the limits of increase of safety of sea transportations, organisation of their work according to the international standards work on increase in number of the International classification societies is conducted. The project of the national sea strategy of Turkmenistan is developed.

Along with modernisation of transport system in the country efforts on creation and development of such international transit-transport corridors, as Afghanistan-Turkmenistan-Azerbaijan-Georgia-Turkey are undertaken.

Proceeding from the proposals which were put forward by president Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov during a tripartite meeting who took place on July 2 with presidents of Afghanistan and Azerbaijan on realisation of this joint project, the tripartite Interdepartmental commission on cooperation development in transport and communication sphere was created. The Road map on the planned works is prepared.

Creation of such large infrastructural objects as the International seaport Turkmenbashi, the Ashkhabad international airport which is under construction high-speed autobahn Ashkhabad-Turkmenbashi allows Turkmenistan to become an important link of the international multimodal system. Their full power output is capable to lead to strategic changes in logistical chains of continental cargo transportation for which the optimal and favourable routes open.

Measures for expansion of transit potential of Turkmenbashi seaport where the electronic account of arrival and departure of cargoes is adjusted are undertaken. The issue of expansion of routes of the international flights which are carried out from this port is studied.

As the energy power with globally significant stocks of power resources Turkmenistan pays much attention to diversification development of pipeline transport. During the telephone conversation which took place on September 18 between president of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and president of Pakistan Arif Alvi in a complex of issues of bilateral cooperation they discussed also progress in realisation of the project of transnational gas pipeline Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI).

For today civil and erection works on its Turkmen site are at finishing stage. More recently between Turkmenistan and Afghanistan the Memorandum of mutual understanding for choice of the ground areas on the Afghani part of highway TAPI has been signed.

The Turkmen leader has expressed hope that with assistance and support of his Pakistan counterpart the building of the gas pipeline in the territory of Pakistan will shortly begin. International transport projects advanced by Turkmenistan and large gas pipelines are a contribution of the country to formation of new global transport architecture.

At the initiative of Turkmenistan United Nations General Assembly accepted three Resolutions on the role of transport-transit corridors in maintenance of international cooperation for sustainable development and strengthening of relations between all types of transport.

In 2016 in the Turkmen capital the first Global conference on sustainable transport was held. The Ashkhabad statement accepted on its results defines key parameters of the international interaction in this area, the maintenance of stability of the international transport-transit infrastructure based on principles.

For the 75th session of UN General Assembly starting on September 15, 2020, Turkmenistan prepared the draught resolution, based on the initiative of multilateral consideration of issues of maintenance of stable international transport transportations in emergency situations.

Its essence consists that owing to the situation which developed now in the world caused by an infectious disease of type new, there is a necessity of creation of the international legal tool providing stable functioning of the international transport infrastructure.

For discussion and development effective and mutually agreed approaches of multilateral cooperation in transport sphere Turkmenistan intends to use not only a global podium of the United Nations, but also other international platforms, in which number the International conference of ministers of developing countries which do not have an access to the sea which is planned to call in Turkmenistan next year.

The Present Regional dialogue of high level on the transport problematics, held by Turkmenistan together with UNECE and ESCAP, has the major value for the further effective interaction with foreign partners and to strengthening of its legal base.

In August of the current year at the next session of Turkmen parliament 6 international documents on transport were ratified, and at the recent session of the government of the country the offer on joining of Turkmenistan to the international Convention on simplification and harmonisation of customs procedures (the Kyoto convention) was considered.

Fruitful interaction with specialised establishments of the United Nations is carried out also in frameworks of digitalization of the transport segment of national economy. In this area the project of the Program of Development of the United Nations on introduction in the country of the integrated information customs system «ASYCUDA WORLD», together with UNDP is realised, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and corresponding state institutions of Turkmenistan prepares the Memorandum project on stage-by-stage implementation of the project «Uniform window» on export-import transactions ».

Following the results of the Regional “transport” dialogue the co-ordinated document which included the basic conclusions of the conference was accepted.

Ogulgozel REJEPOVA