Turkmenistan and South Korea to expand cooperation in energy sector and infrastructure

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The Presidents of Turkmenistan and South Korea agreed in Ashgabat to expand cooperation on large-scale energy and infrastructure projects, as well as to collaborate on Seoul's strategy in Central Asia, Orient reports.

President Serdar Berdimuhamedov and President Yoon Suk Yeol held talks and issued a joint statement outlining the cooperation between the two countries, including the integration of South Korea's innovative capabilities with the resources and development potential of Central Asia.

South Korea, the fourth-largest buyer of crude oil and gas in the world, seeks to deepen cooperation in energy projects and resource development with Turkmenistan, which holds the fourth-largest natural gas reserves globally, according to the Korean agency Yonhap.

"At the summit, held in a friendly and warm atmosphere on June 10, 2024, the leaders of the two countries discussed ways to expand and deepen cooperation between the two countries in economic, social, and cultural spheres, as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest," reads a press release from the Office of the President of South Korea.

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It is noted that President Serdar Berdimuhamedov supported the "Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Initiative on the Silk Road," the first Greater Central Asia strategy announced by the South Korean government in June 2024, and the governments of the two countries closely cooperated in implementing this initiative.

The parties emphasized the importance of strengthening the central role of the UN in addressing international issues, including maintaining international peace and security, sustainable development, as well as conflict prevention and peaceful resolution. They reaffirmed the common goal of both countries to promote mutual understanding and trust and to enhance stability at regional and international levels. They also agreed that international issues should be resolved only through peaceful diplomatic means and methods.

President Yoon Suk Yeol noted that Turkmenistan's policy of neutrality plays an important role in developing peaceful, trustworthy, friendly, and mutually beneficial relations between countries and welcomed the holding of the International Forum of Peace and Trust in Turkmenistan in December 2025.

Serdar Berdimuhamedov and Yoon Suk Yeol confirmed the importance of mutual economic exchange and agreed to expand mutually beneficial economic cooperation. Specifically, the two leaders agreed to intensify joint efforts to strengthen cooperation in areas such as gas and chemicals, shipbuilding, textile industry, transport, information and communication, and environmental protection.

An agreement was also reached to strengthen cooperation in construction and infrastructure between the two countries based on the Memorandum of Understanding on Infrastructure and New Cities. The parties agreed to work together to ensure the success of large-scale construction projects being implemented by Turkmenistan, including petrochemical, environmentally friendly plants, and desulfurization facilities.

The need for cooperation in attracting investments and developing new sectors of the energy industry to achieve international carbon neutrality was noted. The presidents welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Trade and Investment Promotion between the two governments and agreed that a mutual investment promotion and protection agreement should also be concluded as soon as possible.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol was on an official two-day visit to Turkmenistan from June 10 to 11, 2024.

CentralasianLIGHT.org

June 11, 2024