The Russian side hopes that the First Caspian Economic Forum, scheduled for August 12 in Turkmenistan, will give further impetus to trade, investment and tourism cooperation between the Caspian states, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Foreign Policy and Diplomacy of Turkmenistan journal, ONA reports referring to TASS.
He pointed out that economic development of the Caspian Region had gained traction and ground after the Convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea was signed in August 2018. "It is obvious that this document meets the interests of all the Caspian littoral states not solely due to the fact that its clauses clearly define the mutual rights and obligations on the use of the given basin, including the measures on strengthening trust and security in this world region in general. The value of this international agreement is also in its providing the necessary legal conditions for boosting cooperation in trade, investment and transport spheres," Lavrov stated.
The minister stressed that the need to establish a specialized forum, where direct contacts between governments, relevant economic agencies and business entities looking to work in the Caspian Region could be held, had objectively matured. "In this regard, the idea of holding the First Caspian Economic Forum on a regular basis initiated by President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow is well-timed," he said. "I am confident that the First Caspian Economic Forum will give additional impulse to the collaboration in such spheres as trade, investment and tourism that will contribute amongst others to the transformation of the Caspian into one of the world’s largest transport and transit hubs."
Lavrov added that Russia attached great importance to this event, and the level of the Russian delegation headed by Dmitry Medvedev is a testament to this statement.
The First Caspian Economic Forum will take place on August 12 in Turkmenistan’s Awaza national tourist zone. President of the republic Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow put forward the initiative to hold this forum at the fifth Caspian Summit in Aktau, Kazakhstan. He suggested making the forum a permanently active platform for multilateral economic dialogue and holding it in each Caspian state on a rotating basis.