Ramazan Abdulatipov: Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan interested in Russia's work in Caspian
Russia needs to strengthen cooperation with the Caspian countries, the Special Representative of the Russian president for humanitarian and economic cooperation with the Caspian countries, former head of Dagestan Ramazan Abdulatipov said, speaking with Vestnik Kavkaza.
"The Russian president noted during our report on the development of the Caspian region, unfortunately, we are not working enough in the Caspian direction. This is confirmed by the results of the audit of the state of the Caspian region, which we carried out for 7-8 months. Unfortunately, the vast resources of the Caspian Sea are not actually used for economic and cultural development of the Russian Federation," Ramazan Abdulatipov said, adding that it is necessary to pay attention not only to the economy, but also to the ecology of the Caspian region.
"Huge opportunities for cooperation with the Caspian states are not being used as well .That is why third countries have started entering the Caspian region, creating threats of various contradictions and conflicts in the future. In parallel with us, the leaders of the Caspian littoral states, in particular, the governor of the Astrakhan region Alexander Zhilkin, were active in discussing this issue. We were also supported by the presidential aide Igor Levitin. As a result, there was a presidential initiative to discuss the development of the Caspian region and issues of strengthening cooperation with the Caspian states before the end of July at the Presidium of the State Council," he said.
"My note addressed to the president was titled "On the protection of the national interests of the Russian Federation in the Caspian region". Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan are also interested in Russia's active work in the Caspian region. I just returned from Iran, and they are ready to work with us with great interest, and they have already started to work in the Caspian direction. Our Astrakhan region is very active, the free economic zone "LOTOS" was created there. The same free economic zone was created in Iran, and after my trip to Iran, I suggested joining the activities of two FEZs, so that registration of a resident in Astrakhan would mean his automatic registration in the Iranian FEZ," the Russian president's special envoy said.
"Opportunities for cooperation in the Caspian region are huge, and we need to pay significant attention to it. I think the meeting of the Presidium of the State Council will be a qualitatively new stage in the development of the Caspian region and Caspian cooperation," Ramazan Abdulatipov concluded.