Guwahati News Desk: President Ram Nath Kovind arrived here on Friday on a three-day state visit during which he will meet his Turkmenistan counterpart Serder Berdimuhamedov and discuss ways to boost bilateral ties with the resource-rich Central Asian country.
This is the first-ever visit of the President of India to independent Turkmenistan and comes just after the inauguration of the new Turkmen President Berdimuhamedov.
“The state visit of the president will reaffirm the importance we attach to Turkmenistan, not only bilaterally but also in terms of our extended neighborhood concept and role in India-Central Asia partnership,” Sanjay Verma, Secretary West in the MEA, told reporters in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Turkmenistan possesses very large reserves of natural gas.
“Turkmenistan is also strategically placed in Central Asia and connectivity is something on which we feel partnership with Turkmenistan will pay dividends. We have offered a line of credit worth USD 1 billion to Central Asian countries, including Turkmenistan,” Mr Verma said.
President Ram Nath Kovind and Turkmen President Serdar Berdimuhamedov had a tete-e-tete followed by delegation levels talks. The Leaders discussed issues of bilateral and regional cooperation, including under the framework of India-Central Asia Summit.
“Turkmenistan is an important partner for India in the India Central Asia Summit framework, the first of which India hosted virtually in January this year. We agreed to further enhance cooperation under the framework flowing from the India-Central Asia Summit,” President Ram Nath Kovid said on Saturday.