President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Rahmon, friends,
Good afternoon. We are delighted to see you all in Moscow.
This year we marked 30 years since the signing of our basic document, the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance. That treaty became effective in November 1993.
Our relations are developing progressively and have reached a very high level. Suffice it to say that Russia is the main trade and economic partner: Russia accounts for 23 percent, or more precisely, 22.9 percent, of Tajikistan’s trade and holds a leading place in terms of foreign direct investment, which is worth US$1.6 billion.
The intergovernmental commission is working very effectively. I believe that it will hold a regular meeting in Moscow next month. I would like to point out – I have already mentioned our mutual trade – that imports from Tajikistan, primarily the imports of agricultural products, have grown considerably, by 67 percent. It is a very good indicator.
Our cultural ties are developing dynamically, and I would like to say in this connection that on September 1, 2022, you and I took part [via videoconference] in the opening ceremony of five schools with Russian as a subject and as the language of instruction. This year and in the next few years, the Russian Government will allocate 200 million rubles a year to buy textbooks for these schools. I know that there is a shortage of them, but this decision will help.
There are also Tajik students and post-graduate students at our universities. Tajikistan has the largest quota in the CIS: 900 people. We will increase it to 1,000 for the 2024–2025 academic year.
President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon: Thank you.
Vladimir Putin: It is I who should thank you, knowing how much time you devote to the development of the Russian language and our relations in culture and the humanitarian area in general. We have many agreements: at one time, you initiated the creation of a centre for educating talented children in Tajikistan and establishing the Russian Drama Theatre named after Mayakovsky. The Government of the Russian Federation is allocating four and 3.5 billion rubles for these purposes, respectively. So, these plans will be carried out.
Of course, a component linked with ensuring security in the region is very important and we will certainly talk about it, primarily in the context of Afghanistan, especially on the eve of the CSTO meeting in Minsk. You are more sensitive to and clear about everything happening in this area. So, this part will be very important. We are also working thoroughly in other international associations. We are always in contact with each other and are coordinating our positions.
We are very happy to see you. Welcome again!
Emomali Rahmon: Mr Putin,
I am glad to meet with you again. Thank you for the warm reception. I am very pleased to be in Moscow. We have missed it.
We favour the continuation of our active interstate dialogue. Our trade and economic relations are on the rise. Our humanitarian cooperation is at the top level. Security issues occupy a special place in our bilateral agenda.
Today, I would like to discuss with you the status of and prospects for our interaction, as well as international and regional issues. I have already emphasised – and I believe we will continue this discussion during the talks – that there are many good things to do in the economy and other areas.
I would like to cordially thank you again for the invitation and a hospitable reception.
Vladimir Putin: Now we will talk here in the restricted format and later in the expanded format. In the evening, we will have an opportunity to talk face to face at an informal dinner. So we have a big programme ahead,
Emomali Rahmon: Thank you.