Garlyk mining and processing factory – Belarus-Turkmenistan compromise
The ambassador of Belarus to Turkmenistan Vyacheslav Beskosty remarked he had presented his credentials to Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow: “I see the readiness of Turkmen colleagues. They demonstrate it openly. During today’s meeting Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow confirmed the Turkmen side is ready for a compromise,” the diplomat stated.
Belarusian delegation arrived in Ashgabat on 10 October. It included Deputy Prime Minister Igor Lyashenko, who is a co-chairman of the intergovernmental commission on trade and economic cooperation, as well as the directors general of Belaruskali and the main contractor – Belgorkhimprom. “As far as I can understand the Belarusian delegation brings a package of proposals to advance the project,” he said.
The ambassador said: “We’ve agreed with the Turkmen side that the situation around the Garlyk mining and processing factory should in no way negatively affect all the other avenues of cooperation and there is a bunch of them.”
The ambassador did not specify what exactly Belarus and Turkmenistan can agree on with regard to the Garlyk mining and processing factory. “Mutually beneficial decisions will be worked out as a result of contacts to determine how the governments of our countries should proceed in order to advance this project. Securing normal operation of the facility is the ultimate goal,” the diplomat said.
The ambassador explained there are many aspects to the conflict. “In any conflict there is no one side that bears full guilt or responsibility. This project is no exception. I think each side has a bit of guilt,” he said. “Our approach and our vision of the situation state that at some point in time the Turkmen side stopped financing the work to finish the construction of the Garlyk mining and processing factory. Respectively our specialists had to suspend construction and tuning operations. This is why we have this situation, mutual claims have emerged, and the sides sue each other in the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce.”
The ambassador reminded that the Belarus president had given instructions to resolve problems regarding the construction of the Garlyk mining and processing factory together with the Turkmen side taking into account the historically friendly nature of bilateral relations. “He noted it won’t do when two countries connected by many years of friendship start quarrelling. The Turkmen side demonstrates such an approach. Today President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow told me they are ready to look for mutually acceptable solutions,” the diplomat added.