In the historical Zhengyi Ci Theater in Beijing, young spectators have been able to witness the timeless grace of Kunqu Opera which lasts for more than 300 years. Join our correspondents as we explore this priceless cultural treasure.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov gave an interview to representatives of a number of TV channels and authoritative print media of the People’s Republic of China, which is an old and reliable partner of our country. In the conversation with the leader of the nation held in the “question-answer” format, press-attaché of the Embassy of PRC in Turkmenistan took part.
A great interest of representatives of leading TV channels and press of China, which possess the audience of many millions, in Turkmenistan serves a regular evidence of the growing intentional authority of our country, which brings forward the initiatives of global significance under the leadership of the head of the state.
– Respected Mr. President, I represent the press-attaché of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Turkmenistan. In some days, you plan to visit China and take part in the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing. We would like to ask you to agree to answer questions of TV companies CCTV, «CGTN in Russian», the newspaper People's Daily («Jenmin Jih Pao») and Xinhua News Agency.
– First of all, let me thank the leadership of companies CCTV and «CGTN in Russian» for the initiative to conduct this interview. Talking to such authoritative and reputable mass media, which possess the audience of many millions both in China and beyond its limits, of course, no doubt will further facilitate development of mutual understating between our brotherly peoples and states.
As for my decision to participate in the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Beijing, then it signifies, first of all, the understanding of a great importance of this event for the entire planet.
As history testifies, Olympic Games have always glorified peace and friendship between peoples, termination of enmity and wars, consolidation of peoples of various nationalities, political beliefs and their adherence to high ideals of the Olympic movement meant to facilitate mutual understanding, openness and sympathy between peoples and states. As the President of Turkmenistan, the country, which is committed to these principles in its home and foreign policy, I have accepted gratefully the offer of the respected Chairman of the People’s Republic of China.
– What is Your expectation from the Winter Olympic Games?
– I am sure that it will be held at the highest organizational and sports level in the atmosphere of fair competition, mutual respect and a great interest of the audience.
We attentively watched the preparation of China for the Olympics and saw how much had been done, what wonderful projects had been constructed, what innovative and high-tech solutions had been introduced and used in that.
You country has again demonstrated its capability to successfully solve the largest-scale tasks.
I am sure that the upcoming Olympic Games will bring out many great results and will become a bright event in the history of world sports and a true holiday for millions of peoples in various corners of the world.
– China was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with Turkmenistan in 1992 and to support Turkmenistan in pursuing the policy of permanent neutrality. For the past 30 years, China and Turkmenistan have established close, reliable, mutually beneficial and equal relations. In Your opinion, in what areas this cooperation makes ground more successfully, promoting development and progress in both countries, serving peace and mutual understanding on the world arena?
– We highly appreciate and will never forget the support, which China gave us in the course of establishment of Turkmenistan as an independent country and its respectful attitude towards our neutral status and the foreign policy based upon it.
In its turn, Turkmenistan always formulates its approaches accurately and clearly, to the issues which are topical for our Chinese partners, including those concerning the territorial integrity and unity of the People’s Republic of China.
We are firmly committed to the “One China” policy and support peaceful development of inter-coastal relations and peaceful unification of China.
For Turkmenistan, China is not just a super power, the most powerful global economic and industrial centre, a large and promising market. It is a reliable and proven friend. Our relations today bear a long-term and strategic character. They have withstood the test of time, have demonstrated their efficiency and at present, serve as a serious factor of stability and development in the Eurasian space.
The closeness of our world outlooks, goals and tasks in the global issues of peace and security connect us with China. It enables the two countries to cooperate successfully on the world arena, within the framework of the largest international organizations, first of all, the United Nations Organization, to support each other, coordinate the political and diplomatic efforts for promotion and realization of constructive decisions. Such character of our relations answers the true interests of peoples of Turkmenistan and China and makes a positive influence on the development process on the Eurasian continent in particular and in the world in general.
Discussion of the situation in Central Asia takes a special place on the agenda of the Turkmen-China dialogue. Here the positions of our countries also coincide: both Turkmenistan and China stand for creation of a strong system of security in the region based upon the multi-sided balance of interests and adherence to the political and diplomatic methods of solution of problems arising.
In these issues both Turkmenistan and China act as responsible members of the world community by making much practical contribution to creation of regional mechanisms and supporting those positive tendencies, which are observed in the region.
One of the priorities of cooperation between Turkmenistan and the People’s Republic of China is the fuel and energy sector. That is, of course, natural: our countries possess a great potential in this sector. The construction and commissioning of the strategic gas pipeline of Turkmenistan-China into operation in late 2009 testified to it. Realization of the given project served as an example of true partnership relations based upon equality, understanding of mutual advantages, far-sighted vision of prospect and opportunities, which have opened with the start of the gas pipeline.
It is both a real practical implementation of goals to provide the balance of interests of all participants of pipeline energy projects and producers, transiters and consumers.
Today, we work at issues of increase in the volumes of delivery of Turkmen natural gas taking into account the growing demand of the economy of the People’s Republic of China and opportunities of resource basis of Turkmenistan. In this connection, we are ready to discuss in detail the opportunities for construction of the 4th line of the pipeline from Turkmenistan to China.
The work within the framework of the Turkmen-Chinese cooperation committee, at the meeting of which 5 documents, including the Program for cooperation between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China for five years (2021-2025) were signed in November, 2021, is carried out fruitfully. We consider this Program as a firm basis for further progress.
Generally speaking, as a whole, the two countries possess a wide area and prospect of cooperation in policy, economy and trade, transport and energy, investment, high technologies, culture and humanitarian fields.
– China and Turkmenistan have started implementation of large-scale initiatives, respectively, «Belt and Road Initiative» and «Revival of the great Silk Road». How do you see these two strategies from the viewpoint of compliance of long-term mutual interests?
– Presence of impartial mutual interests enables Turkmenistan and China to successfully develop partnership in the light of realization of the mentioned strategies. They are both called to give a great impulse to economic development of Eurasia, which unites the wide area from the Pacific to the Atlantic oceans on modern principles by establishing inter-related industrial and technological cycles and industrial zones and by facilitating solution of many social issues, enhancement of quality of life and wellbeing of peoples.
I am sure that the cornerstone of the new look of geo-economy on our continent should be diversification of cooperation. It is an objective process and any constructive ideas, strategies and initiatives should supplement each other in it based on compatibility of interests and long-term goals.
In this regard, I consider that the concept «Revival of the great Silk Road» by its philosophy and geo-economic meaning joins the Chinese «Belt and Road Initiative».
– Like large pandas for China, Akhal-Teke horses are considered a national heritage for Turkmenistan. They also love them in China and call them «celestial argamaks». These unique animals were brought to China 2 thousand years ago through the ancient Silk Road. As we know, you are an expert in horses. In May 2014, you presented China with an Akhal-teke horse during your attendance to the session of the International Ahalteke Equestrian Association and the opening ceremony of the festival of horse breeding culture of China with Chairman Xi Jinping in Beijing.
How do you consider, with a view of facilitation of long-term development of bilateral relations, besides political and economic cooperation, what we are to do for expansion and deepening of exchanges in the spheres of culture, education, science, and technology, sports and other humanitarian areas?
– The example of Akhal-Teke horses that you have mentioned above testifies to the fact that Turkmenistan and China are the countries with ancient and rich history and our relations date back to the depth of centuries.
In this context, large layers of historical links between peoples of Turkmenistan and China require the most serious research, understanding and application of this great heritage to modern realities and conditions. And here wide opportunities open for scientists and historians of both countries for fruitful joint work.
The cultural and humanitarian sphere is one of the key factors to strengthen friendship and mutual understanding between two countries. Our peoples have mutual interest in art and literature of Turkmenistan and China and states encourage it by creating favourable conditions for close contacts of representatives of creative and scientific circles.
We have agreed with the leadership of the People’s Republic of China to attach proper attention to it further.
The priority area of cultural and humanitarian cooperation between Turkmenistan and China is the education sphere. We highly appreciate readiness of our Chinese partners to train our young people, who master technical and humanitarian specialties in the best higher educational institutions of the People’s Republic of China.
Cooperation in sports will be also developed. The participation of the representative delegation of China in the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat in September of 2017 also speaks of this fact. I am sure that the upcoming Winter Olympics will also give a great impulse to development of cooperation in sports between countries.
In a word, time works for us and future generations. The potential of cooperation between Turkmenistan and China in the humanitarian sphere is called for impartially in the interest of mutual rapprochement of two peoples and states and it will obtain an all-round state support.
– Mr. President, your interview coincides with the Spring Festival–Chinese New Year. Availing of the opportunity, we would like to ask you to convey your New Year congratulations to the Chinese people.
– With pleasure.
I congratulate the people of China with the New Year and sincerely wish them peace and prosperity, fulfilment of all target plans of development, achievement of new great results in development of economy, social sphere, further stable rise of wellbeing and quality of life. I am sure that the wise and far-sighted home and foreign policy of the leadership of the People’s Republic of China will bring new achievements and victories in the upcoming year!
– Respected Mr. President, we express our gratitude to you for the interview and wish you a successful and fruitful visit to China. Thank you very much.