President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Mr President,
I wish you a warm welcome. I am pleased to have this chance to meet again. Today, we are meeting in an informal setting and I think this is very good, as it gives us the chance to discuss the full range of our relations and go over the entire agenda without being bound by protocol.
During the flight here I looked through a summary report and saw that our relations have grown more active of late in many areas. I think the current leadership of Turkmenistan and you personally can take credit for this. Our bilateral trade has increased despite the financial crisis, and I think that both of our countries and peoples benefit from this. We will continue in this same spirit to develop our relations in all different areas as partners and good neighbours. This applies to economic issues, delivery of vehicles and other equipment and machines from Russia, trade in energy resources, military technical cooperation, and also humanitarian cooperation. We are ready in all of these different areas to do everything we can to develop our ties with friendly Turkmenistan.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate you on the Kurban Bairam holiday that is celebrated both in Turkmenistan and in Russia.
I offer you my very best wishes on this holiday.
President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov: Thank you, Mr President.
First of all, I want to thank you for inviting me to visit your wonderful country. We see Russia as a great country. This working visit, as you noted, is informal in atmosphere, and I also think this is a good thing.
I would like to take this opportunity to express on behalf of the entire Turkmenistani people our condolences over the derailment of the Nevsky Express train. We offer our words of sympathy and we pray for deliverance from terrorism and extremism, from those with whom the entire international community has to fight.
You rightly noted that our trade and economic cooperation is showing lively growth. Last year, it came to $7 billion, and this year it has already reached a figure of $5.5 billion for the first 10 months of the year. If we add to this figure the ongoing contracts for large volumes of work this brings the total to even more than $7 billion. I will not go into the specific figures for the various sectors right now.
I note too that in the social and humanitarian sphere Turkmenistan hosted a very successful event –Days of Russia. Next year, a similar event, Days of Turkmenistan, will take place here in Russia, and we are grateful for this.
We also seek to develop our ties with the Russian regions. We have well-organised cooperation with St Petersburg, the Republic of Tatarstan, and Sverdlovsk Region. We have received very good proposals now from the Altai Territory, and we want to build up this kind of cooperation.
Dmitry Medvedev: The Governor of Astrakhan Region visited you recently.
Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov: Yes, he attended the agribusiness summit that we hosted. There were many Russian companies attending and that was good to see.
I want to express our thanks for the opportunity that our young people have to study in your universities, and I want to take this opportunity to invite you to come for the opening of the Alexander Pushkin Turkmenistani-Russian School.
I think that today’s visit, informal though it is, will give new impetus to our future cooperation.