Headlines from the Caspian: November 29, 2022
Author: Caspian Policy Center
Nov 29, 2022
Security and Policy
CSTO Summit Convenes in Armenia
On November 23, the Collective Security Council session of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) convened in Yerevan. The session was attended by Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, President of Kyrgyzstan Sadyr Japarov, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, President of Russia Vladimir Putin, and CSTO Secretary General Stanislav Zas. During the meeting, President Tokayev discussed the importance of member countries supporting Kazakhstan since “one of the primary factors in ensuring security on the southern borders of the CSTO.” Also on the agenda was the assessment of Armenia’s CSTO chairmanship. Pashinyan refused to sign the joint declaration "on providing assistance to Armenia" with Putin, Lukashenka, and other CSTO leaders because cooperation with CSTO obligations could be viewed as “a green light from the CSTO for further aggression against Armenia.”
Source: Astana Times
Brussels Talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan Called off
The follow-up discussion for peace talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan, which was set to take place in Brussels on December 7 has been called off. This meeting was set to include Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, and President of the European Council Charles Michel. The reason for the disagreement is that while Armenia insists that President of France Emmanuel Macron’s attendance was a key factor agreed upon when deciding the meeting, Azerbaijan has requested Macron not attend the meeting as a mediator due to perceived impartiality toward Armenia.
22 Protestors on Trial in Uzbekistan
Starting on November 28, 22 people will face trial at the Bukhara Provincial Court for allegedly provoking unrest in Uzbekistan after the enactment of constitutional amendments in early July. The charges are a result of the constitutional amendment protests in early July in Uzbekistan's Autonomous Republic of Karakalpakstan. Protestors feared the new amendments would limit the region’s religious rights of self-determination. Of the 22 offenses, the most serious was “undermining the constitutional order,” which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Georgian Prime Minister and Azerbaijan’s Minister of Ecology Meet to Discuss Strategic Cooperation
Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili met with Azerbaijan's Minister of Ecology Mukhtar Babayev on November 28 to explore the deepening of their relations. They discussed economic relations and the importance of being “reliable transit partners.”
Aliyev Receives U.S. State Department’s Senior Advisor for Caucasus Negotiations
On November 28, Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev held a meeting with U.S. State Department's Senior Advisor for Caucasus Negotiations, Ambassador Philip Reeker. The two sides exchanged views on the normalization of relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan, as well as on the meeting held between the two countries’ foreign ministers in Washington earlier in November regarding negotiations for a peace agreement.
Kyrgyz and Uzbek Delegations Meet in Batken
On November 28, representatives of Kyrgyzstan’s Batken region met with representatives of Uzbekistan’s Sokh district of the Fergana region. The delegates convened to discuss socio-economic stabilization in border areas as well as preventing crime and ensuring cooperation in irrigation and economic endeavors.
Source: AKI Press
Energy and Economy
The EU and Turkmenistan Held a Conference on Green Energy Cooperation
Turkmenistan and the European Union (EU) held a Conference on Green Energy and EU Hydrogen and Methane Emissions Reduction Strategies in Ashgabat November 21-23. Experts and scientists from the EU and Turkmenistan presented their views at this event, Turkmenistan showcasing its Roadmap for International Cooperation in the field of hydrogen energy for 2022-2023. Both parties reaffirmed their willingness to work together in the sphere of energy.
Turkmenistan Ends Iranian Truck Ban
Three years ago, Turkmenistan banned Iranian trucks from entering through the Incheh Boroun Border Terminal because of the Covid-19 pandemic. On November 24, a local customs official reported that this ban has been lifted, now allowing Iranian truck drivers to apply for visas to transport goods through the port. Prior to the ban, 80 to 140 trucks would pass through the port daily. The Incheh Boroun Terminal is currently the only transportation gate that transits goods both via rails and road. The first cargo load that passed via train through the Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran-Turkey route, arrived at Tehran Train Station from Incheh Boroun last month. It was then shipped off to Europe and Türkiye. Commonly imported products include fabrics, diesel generators, and unprocessed soybean oil.
Source: AKI Press
Germany Develops its Investments in Tajikistan’s Agricultural Sector
The German Agency for International Cooperation GmbH (GIZ) has been helping Tajikistan’s Ministry of Agriculture develop its agricultural sector, especially in the areas of volume of production and determining optimal price levels for reliable planning. On November 27, a GIZ spokesperson announced that GIZ will implement the second phase of its "Towards Rural Inclusive Growth and Economic Resilience in Tajikistan (TRIGGER II)" project. The TRIGGER II project is commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and co-financed by the European Union (EU).
Source: Trend News
Azerbaijan’s Central Bank and World Bank Hold Joint Event on Sustainable Finance
The World Bank and the Central Bank of Azerbaijan held a joint discussion on November 22 in Baku. Topics covered at the event included “green bonds,” global financial trends, and best practices for sustainable finance. The two sides conducted the event as an “interactive seminar and the participants’ questions on sustainable finance and green bonds were answered by experts.” Representatives for the Finance, Economy, and Natural Resources Ministries were present. Others like the Baku Stock Exchange, the National Depository Center, and other investment companies and banks attended as well.
Source: Azer News
Sources: Agenda.ge, AFP, AKI Press, Astana Times, AKI Press, Azer News, President.az, RFE/RL, Trend News