"NEW DIMENSIONS OF TAJIKISTAN-UZBEKISTAN RELATIONS; POSITIVE IMPACTS ON THE REGION"

Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

Islamabad(Staff Reporter)Centre for Global & Strategic Studies in collaboration with the Embassy of the Republic of Tajikistan and Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Islamabad organized a Conference “New Dimensions of Tajikistan-Uzbekistan Relations: Positive Impact on the Region” on 4th October 2018 at Hotel Margala, Islamabad.    

The aim and focus of the Conference was to analyse the start of the thaw between Uzbekistan and Tajikistan as the relations between both the states are growing and have positive impacts on the region. The event brought together diplomats, government representatives and individuals from public and private entities.

Through the platform provided by the CGSS, many prospects were discussed that could be assistive for enhancing the relations between both the countries. The Conference also yield various policy recommendations.

The Conference commenced with the speech of His Excellency Sherali Jononov – Ambassador of the Republic of Tajikistan. The Ambassador deliberated upon “Tajikistan-Uzbekistan Shared Prospects for the Region”. He stated that the historical change in the bilateral relations started after the Summit in China 2018. Delegations from the countries held various meetings to discuss and promote trade, economy, culture, transport, water and security issues. He further stated that the focus of Tajikistan is on the regional security specifically Afghanistan and beyond the region. Recently, there have been several developments in the bilateral relations of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Many projects including railway, tourist flights, transport and communication and energy sector have been launched. A total of 27 bilateral cooperation agreements have been signed in which trade mechanism has been decided through which the trade between both the states have reached to half a billion. He also stated that the human resource from Tajikistan and Uzbekistan can also be helpful for Pakistan in the future.

Brigadier Akhtar Nawaz Janjua SI(M), (Retd) – Senior Member Advisory Board CGSS stated that Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan have always held particular fascination and attraction for all of us in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Ever since the independence of the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan, we have endeavored to establish strong relations with these countries, however with limited success for various reasons. Nevertheless, due to the current environment and example formed by Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, there appears to be a strong desire to develop relations, and this should be capitalized upon. Pakistan is a huge market which can be tapped by the Central Asian States.

His Excellency Furqat A. Sidikov – Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan expressed his views on Pragmatic & constructive regional policy of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan on building good neighbourhood relations. He stated that Uzbekistan and Tajikistan are connected by common history and shared culture and that the relations between both the countries are rapidly growing. The Ambassador expressed their readiness to work together in order to bring the bilateral ties between Tajikistan and Uzbekistan to a new level for the sake of both the nations. He stated that the mutual trade turnover is growing dynamically and trade agreements of worth more than $300 million were signed and implemented so far.

Mr Ashfaq Ahmed Gondal – Senior Member Advisory Board CGSS presented speech on “Significance of Regional Stability for the Prosperity of Central Asia”. He stated that for peace, stability, prosperity and development in the region, peace in Afghanistan is essential wherein Pakistan and the collaboration with the entire regional countries needs to be done. Stronger regional cooperation yielding to the multifaceted integration of the Central Asian States especially Tajikistan and Uzbekistan is the need of the hour. If no efforts are undertaken in this direction, the region will stumble.

Mr. Adam Saud presented on “Pakistan’s Long-standing astounding bilateral relations with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan”. He stated that both Pakistan and Uzbekistan share similar views on major regional and international issues. The trade volume is standing startling around 40 million USD and is agreed to enhance trade to 300 million USD. Pakistan and Uzbekistan have signed almost 56 bilateral agreements and MOUs since 1991 to provide an institutional framework for an expanding relationship. He stated that Pakistan have signed multiple agreements of co-operation with Tajikistan also. Agreements with both the counties are in the fields of energy, security, trade, defence, culture, infrastructure development and communication.

The session ended by the speech of President Center for Global & Strategic Studies, Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery HI(M), (Retd) on “Role of Center for Global and Strategic Studies in Regional Connectivity: Efforts in Developing Better Relations with Tajikistan And Uzbekistan”. He highlighted the efforts of CGSS to bring Pakistan and Central Asian Republics (CAR) especially Tajikistan and Uzbekistan together by series of meetings/visits and agreements for mutual cooperation that have been done with in last two years. He further stated that CGSS aims to become a bridge between Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan to enhance consistent development of mutual cooperation in trade, economic and investment spheres.