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Turkmenistan

Turkmenistan

Last updated in September 2016

Politics

Turkmenistan sees Germany as a preferred partner in the realm of foreign policy, along with the Russian Federation, China, Turkey and the United States. Political relations between the two countries are steadily growing in intensity.

Germany and Turkmenistan have held annual political consultations since 2011.  Turkmenistan’s President Berdymukhamedov visited Berlin in August 2016.


Economy

Economic relations between the two countries are good but there is still room for improvement. Germany is Turkmenistan’s principal foreign trading partner in the European Union. German products are held in high regard, especially in the technology and health care sectors.

In 2015, bilateral trade was worth EUR 315.2 million. The figures in detail:

  • German imports from Turkmenistan were worth EUR 9.5 million in 2015, compared with EUR 138.7 million in 2014.
  • German exports to Turkmenistan amounted to EUR 305.7 million in 2015, compared with EUR 275.5 million in 2014.
  • Turkmenistan ranked third among Germany’s Central Asian trading partners in 2015, behind Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

There are approximately 100 registered projects involving German investments or partners in Turkmenistan.

More than 50 German companies, such as Wintershall/BASF and RWE, operate there, including 19 with registered offices or German representatives.

The following bilateral agreements are in place:

  • air transport agreement of 19 February 2001
  • investment protection and promotion agreement of 28 August 1997, in force since 19 February 2001
  • revised double taxation agreement, signed on 29 August 2016

There is a German Business Delegate for Central Asia based in Almaty (Kazakhstan).

Germany and Turkmenistan run a bilateral further-training programme for managers, under which some 25 participants are invited to Germany every year.


Culture

Cultural relations between the two countries are based on the cultural agreement that came into force in 2002. Since President Berdymukhamedov took office, there has been a gradual opening in Turkmenistan in terms of cultural exchange.

There is keen interest in the scholarships offered by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and every year young Turkmens are able to take advantage of these. There are three DAAD-seconded academic teachers working in Turkmenistan.

Every year, a number of Turkmen teachers of German participate in the Pädagogischer Austauschdienst’s (PAD) further-education programme in Germany, which also enables them to sit in on classes there. Under the PAD’s awards programme, every other year two students from schools in Turkmenistan travel to Germany.

In 2009, the first Turkmen partner school was recruited to the worldwide Schools: Partners for the Future network and a second partner school joined the network in 2013. A Student Counsellor seconded by the Central Agency for Schools Abroad has been working in Ashgabat since 2015.

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