President Moon Jae-in spoke on the phone with President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov for about 25 minutes from 4:00 p.m. today at the request of the Turkmen President. The two leaders discussed issues of mutual interest, including cooperation in response to COVID-19, as well as the implementation of substantive bilateral collaboration, such as follow-up measures to President Moon’s state visit to Turkmenistan last year.
President Moon congratulated President Berdimuhamedov – a healthcare expert himself as a dentist-turned politician – on Turkmenistan’s successful prevention and control of COVID-19 through the proactive measures taken under his leadership. He went on to say that he looked forward to Turkmenistan’s continued success. In response, President Berdimuhamedov agreed on the necessity of international solidarity and cooperation. He expressed the hope that the two countries would continue to increase joint efforts to respond to COVID-19.
President Moon noted that the two countries are maintaining close public-private cooperation in the healthcare and medical services fields following the successful inaugural meeting of the related working group in July 2019 as a follow-up measure to last year’s Korea-Turkmenistan summit. The President cited as one example the May 28 video conference this year held between Korea’s Kyungpook National University Hospital and Turkmenistan’s Ministry of Health and Medical Industry to share systematic COVID-19 responses. The President said he hoped such cooperation would deepen further going forward.
Both presidents pointed to the Kiyanly Gas Chemical Complex, which they jointly visited last year, as a symbol of the two nations’ mutually beneficial cooperation. President Moon asked President Berdimuhamedov to look into and support follow-up projects from last year’s summit in energy, infrastructure, the defense industry, shipbuilding, railroads, ICT and other areas for their continued progress.
President Berdimuhamedov reiterated that the Kiyanly plant is an example of successful bilateral cooperation. He said he is looking forward to active cooperation going forward, noting the two nations’ brisk trade and the major business fields that Korean companies have entered in Turkmenistan.
The two leaders agreed that bilateral and regional consultative bodies have contributed to multidimensional development in the two countries’ cooperation. Such bodies include a joint cooperation committee between the two governments, the Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum and the Korea-Turkmenistan Business Council established on the occasion of last year’s summit. The two presidents agreed to make continued efforts to promote these consultative bodies.
President Berdimuhamedov said their conversation today proceeded well in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. President Moon expressed the hope that President Berdimuhamedov’s reciprocal visit to Korea following his own to Turkmenistan last year could take place as soon as COVID-19 is brought under control and other conditions are met.