August 12, 2018
Communiqué of the Fifth Caspian Summit
On August 12, 2018, the Fifth Caspian Summit was held in Aktau, in which President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Hasan Ruhani, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov attended.
In the development of the decisions of the Caspian summits in Ashgabat (2002), Tehran (2007), Baku (2010) and Astrakhan (2014), in a traditional atmosphere of friendship, trust and good-neighborliness, the most important issues of pentagonal cooperation in the Caspian Sea region were discussed opinions on topical international issues.
The main event of the summit was the signing by the leaders of the five states of the basic international treaty developed on the basis of consensus and mutual consideration of the interests of all parties – the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea. This fundamental document creates a new legal regime of the Caspian Sea that meets modern requirements and aims at further intensification of the comprehensive interaction of coastal countries.
In order to effectively implement the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea and to review various aspects of cooperation in the Caspian Sea, the Presidents decided to establish a mechanism for pentagonal regular consultations under the auspices of foreign ministries at the level of deputy foreign ministers / plenipotentiary representatives of the Caspian littoral states and holding initial consultations no later than six months from the date of signing the Convention. As a matter of priority, it is entrusted to start developing and agreeing on a draft agreement on the methodology for establishing direct baselines.
It was with deep satisfaction that the signing at the Fifth Caspian Summit of the Agreement between the Governments of the Caspian littoral states on trade and economic cooperation and the Agreement between the Governments of the Caspian littoral states on cooperation in the field of transport contributing to the further strengthening and development of cooperation between the littoral states in the industrial, trade, energy, transport, innovation, tourism, information and other areas of interest. To implement these agreements, meetings of the competent departments of the Caspian states will be held on a regular basis. In order to develop contacts between entrepreneurs and business structures of the five countries, it was proposed to hold the first Caspian Economic Forum in 2019 in Turkmenistan.
The importance of organizing regular five-way interaction of maritime administrations of coastal states is emphasized with the aim of effective and mutually beneficial cooperation in the field of sea transport in the Caspian Sea. The need to prepare a five-sided agreement on cooperation in the field of maritime transport in the Caspian was noted.
The signing of the intergovernmental agreement on the prevention of incidents in the Caspian Sea during the summit is aimed at implementing the basic principles of interaction of states – respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, harming each other’s security, adherence to agreed confidence-building measures in the sphere of military activity in the spirit of predictability and transparency in accordance with common efforts to strengthen regional security and stability.
In order to ensure the interests of the coastal states in the sphere of security, the Presidents confirmed the need to develop and adopt coordinated confidence-building measures in the Caspian in the field of military activities at sea.
The presidents welcomed the signing of the protocols on cooperation in the field of combating terrorism, organized crime, on the interaction of border agencies with the Agreement on Cooperation in the Field of Security in the Caspian Sea of November 18, 2010, aimed at counteracting urgent challenges and threats, as well as preventing illegal activities.
The leaders paid special attention to the state of the environment in the Caspian. It was stated that the major result of efforts of the Caspian states in this direction was the signing on July 20, 2018 in Moscow of the Protocol on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context to the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea of November 4, It is entrusted to complete the internal procedures for the entry into force of the adopted protocols to it, as well as the process of placing the Convention Secretariat on the territory of the Caspian states on a rotational basis.
Practical implementation of these documents enhances the protection of the Caspian Sea from natural and man-made threats, reducing risks to its unique marine environment and biological diversity.