On the website of the trade organization Switzerland Global Enterprise there is an article entitled "Turkmenistan: new transport and energy projects connecting East and West". Its author, Vice-President of the United Chamber of Commerce of the Swiss Confederation, Executive Director of the Turkmen-Swiss business Council Iurie Moraru writes: "From the geographical, energy, logistics and transport, trade and even political points of view, Turkmenistan should be seriously considered in the context of the initiative to revive the Silk road".
In particular, the article highlights three important events that took place in Turkmenistan in 2017-2018, which allow our country to become a valuable participant in the new Silk road and an attractive investment, trade and business partner for European and Swiss companies. Among them: the opening of the modernized international seaport in Turkmenbashi in May 2018, the adoption of the law of Turkmenistan on free economic zones in October 2017 and the signing of the Convention on the legal status of the Caspian sea on August 12, 2018.
Taking into account these events, according to the author, new prospects for Swiss business in Turkmenistan are opening up.
Thus, the international seaport in Turkmenbashi, which is one of the largest in the Caspian Sea, claims to be an important link between Europe, the Middle East, the black sea region, South and South-East Asia. It is intended to intensify the development of trade relations not only of Turkmenistan, but also of landlocked Turkmen neighbors — Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan.
The Turkmenbashi port has acquired a number of new facilities, including a shipyard, a ferry and passenger terminal, a container terminal, a General cargo terminal, a bulk cargo terminal, and a polypropylene terminal.
The law "On free economic zones" (FEZ) signed by the President of Turkmenistan on October 10, 2017 opens the way to the creation of safe, transparent and competitive legal, tax and business conditions for attracting foreign companies and investors to Turkmenistan.
Speaking about the importance of the Convention on the legal status of the Caspian sea signed by the heads of the five Caspian States, the author pays special attention to the fact that the Caspian Treaty eliminates legal barriers to the construction of the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline from Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan.
For Turkmenistan, the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline materializes the idea of selling natural gas in European markets, thereby diversifying export directions. According to the expert, there are a number of reasons why the project is beneficial for Switzerland. First, Switzerland is a net importer of gas. In addition, as one of the main transit countries in the heart of Europe, Switzerland is well integrated into the European gas transmission network. A ban on the production of nuclear and coal energy creates opportunities for increasing demand for natural gas.
Therefore, according to Mora, any pipeline or infrastructure project aimed at increasing and diversifying gas supplies to Europe is regarded as a contribution to the security of Switzerland's energy supply. And the Trans-Caspian gas pipeline is one of such projects and cannot but arouse interest from Switzerland.