India and Tajikistan: Agreements and Joint Statement

India and Tajikistan: Agreements and Joint Statement

Question: India and Tajikistan have framed two agreements and issued a joint statement recently. Provide an overview of each.

The Agreements

- The first agreement signed between India and Tajikistan was between the ministries of culture in the field of culture for 2016-2018

- This programme of cooperation envisages collaboration in the field of culture through exchange of expertise in promotion, protection and preservation of cultural heritage in both nations, exchange of information and expertise as well as organisation of culture days in each other’s nations for deeper cultural understanding between the two countries

- Exchange of a note on setting up computer labs in 37 Tajikistan schools was another agreement. This note conveys the aim of the Indian side for setting up computer labs in 37 schools for promoting HRD and skill development efforts here.

The Joint Statement

- The President of Tajikistan and India’s PM had a series of wide ranging talks on regional, bilateral and international issues, noting the shared history and cultural affinities between their people.

- The two leaders also welcomed exchanges at Ministerial and senior official levels to further bilateral ties. An existing legal framework for cooperation between the two nations and enhanced focus on MoU outcomes was also stressed

- Both sides reiterated the need for the adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Tourism by UNGA

- A stable and secure environment for economic development has also been emphasised

- The two leaders also agreed to re-ignite the official level interactions within the framework of JWG on Counter Terrorism

- Continued cooperation between security agencies coupled with information sharing mechanisms were stressed to combat extremism and terrorism

- India’s role in capacity building of Tajik forces was emphasised

- Leaders also mandated the eight session of the India-Tajikistan Joint Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation (JCM), to locate specific steps to facilitate exchanges between business communities

- Tajikistan emphasised its support for the International North South Transport Corridor which will facilitate travel and transport of goods between India and Central Asia

- The two nations also reiterated that the proposed Pakistan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan Trilateral Transit Trade Agreement (PATTTTA) would facilitate trade between Tajikistan and the countries of the South Asian region.

- Further consultations will be held for inclusion of India in this arrangement

- Fifth freedom rights for carriers and improve of air connectivity between Delhi and Dushanbe was also stressed

- Leaders of both nations also agreed to deepen agricultural cooperation; Tajikistan expressed gratitude towards India for up-gradation and modernisation of the Varzob-1 Hydro Power Station through the Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) and National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) as well as various training programmes organised for experts from Tajikistan in the field of hydropower.

- Greater engagement was sought between the two nations in the field of hydropower generation

- Tajikistan also welcomed India’s proposal to implement a tele-medicine project in this Central Asian country

- Better utilisation of resources for INTC and ICCR for capacity building in Tajikistan was also focused on.

- Leaders also emphasised cooperation in food processing, pharma, mining, textiles, skill development, IT, Science and technology, culture and tourism

- An AYUSH centre will also be set up in Tajikistan

- PM Modi thanked Tajikistan for installation of a bust of renowned Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore in Dushanbe.

- Cooperation in the field of TV and radio broadcasting was emphasised to promote P2P and cultural contact

- Steps towards liberalisation of the existing visa regime were also emphasised

- Leaders reiterated the need for eace and security in Afghanistan

- Tajikistan expressed support for UNSC membership for India and also supported India for SCO membership

Facts and Stats

- Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) was established in 1991 to ensure continued cooperation in trade and military policy and recognition of borders between the ex Soviet states (except Baltic States).

- Russian Federation, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan are the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

- Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan fall in Asia and are commonly known as CAR or Central Asian Republics

- Bilateral trade between India and Tajikistan stood at USD 23.87 million for the year 2011-2012 while exports were pegged at USD 21.28 million and imports ranged at USD 7.09 million
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