One of the most advanced Russian regions establishes cooperation with Turkmenistan.
Governor of Sverdlovsk region Eduard Rossel arrived in Turkmenistan at the head of an impressive business delegation - heads of the industrial complex of Middle Ural, directors of region largest enterprises and businessmen - to join celebrations of the 11th anniversary of Neutrality of Turkmenistan and Day of Student Youth marked in the republic on December 12. However, holiday celebrations and business should not prevent each other.
The President of Turkmenistan received the Russian guests on the eve of festivities. In the course of the conversation with Saparmurat Niyazov the Ural's governor expressed readiness for large-scale cooperation with Turkmenistan and proposed to discuss prospects of supplying Turkmenistan with machine engineering, metallurgical and pipe products as well as drilling rigs taking into account Turkmenistan's high demand for these products due to the rapid growth of the oil and gas industry. The head of state supported his idea and said the Turkmen side was interested in purchasing from Ural powerful pumps for agriculture and raw materials for its metallurgical industry. In turn, Turkmenistan also has something to offer to Ural partners, Niyazov noted. The potential of cooperation is unlimited and has great prospects. As for the mechanism of cooperation, it should be developed on the basis of existing Turkmen-Russian agreements.
The governor invited the President of Turkmenistan to visit Sverdlovsk region. Saparmurat Niyazov accepted the invitation. For the time being, the sides decided to set up relevant working groups and task them with designing agreements on issues of bilateral partnership. During the visit, representatives of Sverdlovsk region also saw the sights of the Turkmen capital and visited a number of large industrial enterprises, including Marble and Granite Processing Plant in Ovadandepe near Ashgabat and textile and jeans factories, the flagships of the light industry of Turkmenistan.
Members of the Russian delegation met with local journalists before departure and aired a number of proposals on the establishment of efficient partnership between Turkmenistan and industrial Ural.
Eduard ROSSEL, governor of Sverdlovsk region:
"Despite the short visit, it was very impressive. Bidding farewell, Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov came up with an idea to arrange an Akhalteke horse race to Sverdlovsk region to show the beauty of Turkmen racers to our amateur horse-breeders and owners of stud-farms. This is the great idea considering the fact that we want to build a hippodrome in Yekaterinburg like the one we saw at the Akhalteke equestrian complex.
As for the results of the visit, I think we have many common interests. In particular, mutually beneficial relations can be established in the oil industry and agriculture. We have visited the Trade Center, a truly Oriental bazaar where we saw with our own eyes the foodstuff abundance of the Turkmen market. The Turkmen side can easily supply foodstuffs to Yekaterinburg as well. Taking into account quality of local farm products and fairly cheap prices, it can successfully compete with products that are currently being supplied to our region.
We have also agreed that Ashgabat would inform us about all possible tenders, for Turkmenistan is constructing a lot and purchasing modern technologies and equipment on a tender basis. We could supply machinery and metallurgical products at a much cheaper price. It would be beneficial both for us and for Turkmenistan."
Vicktor KASHKAROV, minister of foreign and external economic relations of Sverdlovsk region:
"We have had a chance to visit two large enterprises - jeans complex and textile plant. After getting acquainted with these giants we could see ourselves that Turkmenistan has chose the right course which is aimed at the full use of its own resources. Whereas Turkmen cotton was sold abroad as raw material in the past, it is now fully used by the national economy for production of garments which provide the country with additional profits. State of the art equipment was installed at the plants. What I also noted is that Turkmenistan is successfully solves social problems. In particular, it concerns the problem of employment which is very serious in many countries.
We will sure add to our arsenal Turkmenistan's experience and establish the closest relations with Turkmen partners in the future."
Vladimir GORODILOV, vice-president of closed joint-stock company Uralmash:
"Our delegation included heads of the largest industrial enterprises of Sverdlovsk and Chelyabinsk regions. I represent one of the leading plants - Uralmash. Our production is well known and valued in Turkmenistan because for many years the republic's oil and gas industry used equipment produced by Uralmash. In the past, we would not only supply our production but also train Turkmen specialists.
The purpose of our visit to Ashgabat was to renew strong relations that existed in the past. We are ready, as before, to not only supply the advanced equipment to Turkmenistan's fuel-energy complex but also manage necessary service works and train national specialists."
Veniamin ELINSON, deputy director-general of Ural Fiber-Optic Plant (Yekaterinburg).
"Our plant is ready to work with Turkmen colleagues in three major areas. First of all, we produce fiber-optic optoelectronic sighting devices for Mig-29 and Su-25 jet-fighters adopted by the National Army of Turkmenistan. We are ready to provide regular assistance to keep them in good service. We have had preliminary talks during these days. We hope that the talks will continue given that a delegation of the Ministry of defense of Turkmenistan visited us in July.
We also produce high quality medical equipment, infant incubators, lamps, pulmonary ventilation devices. We informed the minister of healthcare of Turkmenistan about it. We are confident that our contacts would successfully develop in these areas because Turkmenistan pays specific attention to development of healthcare.
Besides, the Ural plant, the only one in CIS, deals with development and production of survey meters, levels and theodolites, GPS stations which could be used in Turkmenistan.
We are satisfied with the results of the visit and hope that our mutually advantageous cooperation offered a powerful incentive for development."