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U.S. Cooperation With Tajikistan

US Assistant Sec. of State Robert Blake in Tajikistan.

Countries share similar interests and goals in Central Asia, including regional stability, economic growth and regional economic integration.

The United States and Tajikistan enjoy a close, cooperative relationship, which began with the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1992, soon after Tajikistan gained its independence from the Soviet Union.

U.S. Cooperation With Tajikistan
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The countries share similar interests and goals in Central Asia, including regional stability, economic growth and regional economic integration. It therefore makes sense that they developed a broad-based cooperative relationship in such areas as counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, and regional growth and stability. Tajikistan has also been a strong partner in the international community’s efforts to bring security and peace to Afghanistan.

In 2010, the United States and Tajikistan launched an annual bilateral consultation process to discuss practical ways to work together towards a lasting partnership. Thus, in late February, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert Blake traveled to Tajikistan for high-level discussions regarding issues of importance to both countries.

Assistant Secretary Blake noted the importance of ensuring free and fair elections later this year; and the need to provide space for nongovernmental organizations, journalists, and other members of civil society to operate freely.

Assistant Secretary Blake also thanked President Emomalii Rahmon and the people and government of Tajikistan for their “very strong support of stabilization efforts in Afghanistan” and of the U.S. and international coalition efforts in Afghanistan.

Acknowledging that the planned drawing-down of troops in Afghanistan will impact the entire region, Mr. Blake stressed that to prevent any potential instability, the United States is “engaged in a process now to train the Afghan National Security Forces and to give them the capabilities so that they are fully prepared to assume full responsibility for security at the end of 2014.”

And finally, Assistant Secretary of State Blake congratulated President Rahmon and the people of Tajikistan on the country’s impending accession to the World Trade Organization: the culmination of Tajikistan’s eleven year effort to meet admittance standards by liberalizing the country’s foreign trade and investment laws and reducing customs duties.

“We expect that the WTO implementation process will help improve the overall business and investment climate in Tajikistan,” said Assistant Secretary Blake, “and contribute toward our shared vision of greater trade and investment and connectivity in this region.”