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To look into each others eyes
After a ten-year dispute the dialogue on the Caspian Sea entered a new, open stage...Today, most of exports express opinion that the Ashkhabad summit has failed, for much initiatives brought less results. However, over the past 10 years we are following over the situation when the economic interests - real and imaginary -meet with the political interests, even moreover - geopolitical, if taking into consideration the fact that some forces having no geographic relations with the Sea have already entered the "Caspian Party". There is no need to count out oil and gas resources of the Caspian Sea, energy resources of each littoral state possesses, for these figures are available in various works of experts of all five littoral states and many others, who counted the benefits and losses of each side in case of different approaches to the division case. While these shares in various terms mean millions dollars, the problem was long discussed on the secondary level: each was afraid of loosing. Meantime, development of Caspian resources has been developing with active participation of the United States. Who declared the region as the zone of its national interests. Several transnational companies have been trying to get the ownership of the future pipeline infrastructure i.e. export of energy resources. Saparmurat Niyazov was the first who understood the intentions of the "third states" who were going to have an active participation in the division of the sea and called to his colleagues for the "Caspian pie" to display common sense i.e. - to stop, at last, the fuzz and start solving the problem. "We need to look to each others eyes," Niyazov said. It also can be presumed that Niyazov's aspiration to define the sea status as soon as possible was dictated not by economic reasons only. As it is known, several heated arguments take place among the littoral states around the sea and the influence of some non littoral states had an impact on that arguments. I think it was the very motive Niyazov has been guided: not to allow the situation to be uncontrolled, while uncertainty of the situation is becoming a detonator for illegal actions, causing violence and fraud, that in its turn cause a real conflict. The fact is that the determination of the Caspian Sea status is on the level which demands serious steps. Therefore, each of the participants of the game need to disclose its real position. If the position of one of the participants is lawless it risk to appear under the serious pressure, later either to soften its position, or go for conflict that anybody could not afford. It also should be stressed in this regard about a new aspect of the accord reached during the talks. In fact, the heads of the Caspian littoral states agreed that the most urgent problems will be solved during direct talks, and if necessary - in an international arbitrary organization. But the most important is that the Caspian leaders undertook not using forces in any case. It is not enough. It is not excluded that all participants of the meeting appraised adequately the new format of discussions of Caspian problem, suggested by Saparmurat Niyazov. They are sharing the same opinion while saying that it was the first time when such complicated issue was offered for open and constructive discussion. In fact there can not be other point, for the new developments (those shaped after the September 11 events) are affecting the situation around the Caspian Sea. The entire Central Asian region is now unofficially registered as a potential "exporter" of extremism and instability. If the process of solution of the Caspian dispute is drugged out for a longer period of time then all the five littoral state could be included into the list of the states-hotbeds of new instabilities.

However, while discussing unfavorable versions we need to hope for future, taking in minds the fact that fist and the most important step has already made. Ashkhabad summit is a history now. The heads of the Caspian littoral states are preparing for talks in Tehran, understanding significance of forthcoming talks.
Serdar Durdiyev

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