OSCE - Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe

03/06/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 03/06/2019 10:18

OSCE supports Istanbul Process Regional Infrastructure working groups meeting hosted by Turkmenistan

ASHGABAT, 6 March 2019 -The Foreign Affairs Ministry of Turkmenistan, supported by the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat, hosted today in Ashgabat a meeting of the technical working groups on the Regional infrastructures Confidence Building Measures (RI-CBM) within the framework of the Istanbul Process on Afghanistan.

During the meeting, representatives of the participating countries of the Istanbul Process and international stakeholders presented reports on the implementation of the Regional infrastructures CBM plan.

Vepa Hajiyev, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, stressed in his opening address that Turkmenistan is committed to the principle of peaceful political settlement of the situation in Afghanistan. He also expressed hope that the meeting will serve as a positive impulse for further advancement of goals and objectives of joint co-operation in the framework of providing assistance to the strengthening of security, stability and economic progress in Afghanistan.

'We have gathered here today to discuss the progress of infrastructure projects implemented by all stakeholders of the RI-CBM,' said Natalya Drozd, Head of the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat.

'The OSCE stands ready to employ its comprehensive security instruments to maintain a sustainable dialogue on the existing and planned infrastructure projects and to facilitate discussions in the areas pertinent to the RI-CBM, such as security of regional infrastructure and trade facilitation on new trade and transport routes.'

The participants stressed the importance of the effective implementation of various large-scale and local economic projects in the region for fostering the socio-economic stability, security and further prosperity of the 'Heart of Asia' region. The discussions also addressed the role of international and regional organizations in promoting infrastructure projects in the energy sector on the basis of partnership and in the current investment climate.

The event was attended by representatives of the participating countries of the Istanbul Process, as well as regional and international organizations.

The Istanbul Process was established as a platform for regional dialogue and co-operation for encouraging security, political, and economic co-operation between Afghanistan and its neighbours. The project includes a number of large-scale regional initiatives, including the construction of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline, the Asian International Railway Corridor and the Lapis Lazuli Trade and Transportation Corridor.

The participating countries of the Istanbul Process include Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and the United Arab Emirates.

Assistance in the organization of the regional technical groups meeting is provided as a component of an extra-budgetary project of the OSCE Centre funded by the United Kingdom.