Iran’s Exhibition in Turkmenistan
Sunday 18 December 2011
TEHRAN (Fars News Agency) – Turkmenistan’s capital city of Ashgabat is scheduled to host an exclusive exhibition of Iranian goods in the fields of mining and industries in the first three months of the new year, Turkmen Vice-President Qorban Nazarov announced on Saturday.
- Iran-Turkmenistan railway
The construction of Iran-Turkmenistan railway project was officially began last June in the city of Gonbad Kavoos (گنبد کاووس), northern Iran. It will connect the Central Asian countries to the Persian Gulf states and is projected to transport 3-5 million tons of goods per year. Based on the agreement, 150 km of the railway will be built in Iran.
(Photo: courtesy of Mehr News)
“Based on the negotiations with Iranian officials, we agreed that Iran’s 6th Exclusive Industry and Mine Exhibition be held in Ashgabat in the first three months of the new year,” Nazarov said. The fifth exclusive exhibition of Iran was held in Ashgabat in March 2011 and lasted for three days. Nearly 60 Iranian companies displayed their capabilities and products in the exhibition.
Iran has initiated massive diplomatic steps to expand its ties with the neighbouring and the Central Asian states. President Ahmadinejad’s administration has in recent years paid special attention to Tehran’s economic, cultural and political cooperation with Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.
In July, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi stressed the necessity for the further expansion of trade cooperation with Ashgabat, and said Tehran is eager to use the potentials of Turkmenistan’s market.
“Given their unique capabilities and capacities, the Iranian and Turkmen markets complement each other, and there are many capacities in Turkmenistan’s market for Iranian traders, industrialists and Iran’s engineering-technical services,” Salehi said in Ashgabat, in an address to Iranian and Turkmen businessmen.
Tehran has the largest volume of trade exchange with Turkmenistan after Russia. Almost 100 industrial facilities of foremost importance for the Turkmen economy have been built or are being built in Turkmenistan with Iranian help. The railroad from Tejen to Mashhad (مشهد) via Sarakhs (سرخس) opened the shortest way to the Middle East for Ashgabat. Iran helped Turkmenistan with construction of a 200-km gas pipeline between Korpege and Kurdkui. Turkmenistan in return pledged to deliver up to 25 million m³ of gas to Iran every year for the next 25 years.
In the meantime, the relations between Iran and Turkmenistan are not exactly cloudless. In January 2008, the Iranians were greatly infuriated by the decision of Ashgabat to interrupt gas deliveries to Iran because of the extreme colds. Gas export to Iran was finally restored, but at $140 per 1,000 m³ instead of the previous $65. Tehran nevertheless preferred backstage negotiations to an outright scandal. In any event, Mahmud Ahmadinejad and Gurbankuly Berdymuhammedov signed an agreement on annual export of 10 billion m³ of gas to Iran, in February 2009.