Deepening ties between Uzbekistan and Afghanistan

By Sarkaritel December 4, 2017 09:52

On 4 December President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Mohammad Ashraf Ghani arrives in Tashkent on an official visit. He is visiting Uzbekistan on the invitation of President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, who is attaching the priority importance to deepening ties with neighboring countries.

For the past year President Shavkat Mirziyoyev has taken tremendous efforts to foster open, transparent and pragmatic interaction with leaders of Central Asian countries which have created a completely new atmosphere of cooperation in the region and contributed to intraregional confidence building.

Uzbekistan is also attaching high importance to the expansion of mutually beneficial cooperation with neighboring Afghanistan. These two countries are connected with the deep ties of friendship and good-neighborliness that go back centuries.

President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev advocates strong support for the efforts of the Afghan people and the international community to establish enduring peace in Afghanistan. In his speech at the 72nd Session of the UN General Assembly, President Mirziyoyev stressed that the only way to peace in Afghanistan is a direct dialogue, without preconditions, between the central government and the main domestic political forces. Negotiations should take place with the predominant role of the Afghans themselves, on the territory of the country itself and under the auspices of the United Nations.

Uzbekistan’s special attention to further develop relations with Afghanistan is also supported by the fact that in May 2017 the President of Uzbekistan has established a new post – a Special Representative of the President of Uzbekistan for Afghanistan. Besides at the initiative of Shavkat Mirziyoyev, a «roadmap» was approved for further development of multifaceted cooperation between Uzbekistan and Afghanistan.

Uzbekistan remains committed to continuing the policy of promoting social and economic reconstruction of Afghanistan, developing transport and energy infrastructure, training national personnel and organizing joint ventures. The Uzbek-Afghan intergovernmental and interdepartmental agreements, including «On Trade and Economic Cooperation», «On International Transport Routes», «On Cooperation in the Field of Transit and Transport» serve as a reliable foundation for this work.

An important step in bilateral trade relations was recent opening of joint trading houses in Kabul and Mazari-Sharif with a permanent exhibition of goods called «Made in Uzbekistan», supplies of food and medical items, electrical equipment, construction materials and other products to Afghanistan.

Significant support of Uzbekistan for the neighboring state is the supply of electricity through power lines built with the participation of domestic companies. Several years ago Uzbekistan Railways JSC completed construction of the first in Afghanistan railway «Hairaton-Mazari-Sharif» with a length of 75 kilometers. As recently as 29 November 2017 first direct air connection came into operation between Kabul and Tashkent.

The principled position of Uzbekistan in fostering long-term and mutually beneficial relations with Afghanistan serves the consistent development of bilateral cooperation in the interests of the two countries.

By Sarkaritel December 4, 2017 09:52