Beginning of a Meeting with President of Tajikistan Emomali Rakhmon 2009-02-24 20:56:49 Zavidovo, Tver Region President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Dear Emomali Sharipovich! I am pleased to welcome you to Zavidovo, which is in the Moscow Region. As agreed during our last meeting at the summit of the EurAsEC [Eurasian Economic Community] and the CSTO [Collective Security Treaty Organisation], we are going to discuss our joint projects, our affairs and in general relations between Russia and Tajikistan. We'll be discussing all sorts of topical issues for our countries and our peoples, the issues that are on the agenda. Of course we’ll discuss economic issues, political issues, and regional ones – we'll work through the entire agenda. And I think that this will be good preparation for your state visit to Russia this year; that is, this will be a two-step or two-stage affair. There are always lots of problems in the world, and we need to think about how to proceed. We have agreed on a number of economic projects and we need to figure out how to continue to move forward with those. We need to consult about regional affairs. So we are going to work though the whole agenda of Russia-Tajikistan relations. I hope you will get a chance to admire the natural surroundings in this region. We'll go for a walk together and of course have lunch. President of Tajikistan Emomali Rakhmon: Thank you very much, Dmitry Anatolyevich, for inviting me. I welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss things, first and foremost bilateral issues and issues of economic cooperation. And above all, the progress we've made in implementing the agreement reached during your official visit to Dushanbe and subsequent agreements based on our bilateral meetings. I would like to announce that, despite the economic crisis, our trade is now worth more than $1 billion for the first time in the 18-year history of our relations. Dmitry Medvedev: That is a good result. Emomali Rahmon: This shows that there is great potential for the development of bilateral cooperation: economic, political, military and technical cooperation, as well as joint work in the field of hydroelectric power, that is, on all fronts.