Friday 28.07.2017

Bilateral relations between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria

On January 18, 1992 the Republic of Austria recognized independence of the Republic of Tajikistan and on March 25, 1992 diplomatic relations between Tajikistan and Austria were established.

of Tajikistan’s Embassy in Vienna in December 1997 and Embassy of Austria to Tajikistan with the residence in Astana (Kazakhstan) in November 2007 is a striking illustration of mutual interest in further intensification of bilateral ties.

Political Relations, Visits

In 1997 the President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon visited the Republic of Austria for participation in the International Conference of the donor countries on support to post-war development in Tajikistan where he met with the Federal President of the Republic of Austria Mr. Thomas Klestil. They discussed wide-scope of issues related to the prospects of bilateral and multilateral cooperation.

A significant event in the new history of relationship between the two countries was the first official visit of the President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon to the Republic of Austria, which took place on June 7, 2011. During his visit Emomali Rahmon held meeting with the President of the Republic of Austria Dr. Heinz Fisher. Presidents discussed issues related to enhancement of bilateral relations between two countries. During the visit, in the presence of Presidents a number of bilateral documents were signed. On the next day within the framework of this visit, delegation of the Republic of Tajikistan, including Minister of Economy and Trade Mr.Farrukh Hamraliev, Finance Minister Mr.Safarali Najmiddinov and Chairman of the State Committee on Investments and Management of State Property Mr.Davlatali Saidov attended the World Economic Forum in Vienna.

The first official visit of the Federal President of the Republic of Austria Dr. Heinz Fischer to Tajikistan on March 12-13, 2013 has given further impulse to the relations between two countries. In the framework of his official visit the President of the Republic of Austria Dr. Heinz Fischer and the President of the Republic of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon held tete-a-tete meeting as well as other official top-level negotiations took place.

Development of cooperation in the fundamental areas of economy and investment, including energy, light and food industries, agriculture, transport and communications, production of construction materials and others have been named among the prospective directions of relations between both countries.

The Tajik-Austrian business forum has been held in the framework of the official visit with participation of the Presidents of both countries Emomali Rahmon and Dr. Heinz Fischer. Numerous representatives from both states were attended this event.

On November, 24, 1998 during Conference of the donor countries on support to post-conflict development in the Republic of Tajikistan Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan Talbak Nazarov and State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Austria Mrs. Benita Ferrero-Waldner exchanged notes on recognition of contracts on the mutual relations had signed earlier between the USSR and the Republic of Austria.

Noting mutual interest in further strengthening collaboration in the field of security and international relations, it was agreed to conduct annual political consultations in the capitals of both countries on rotation basis.

So far, both sides have held five political consultations as follows:

First two rounds of Tajik-Austrian political consultations were held in Dushanbe on February 21 – 23, 2007 and on May 7, 2009 respectively;

Third round of bilateral political consultations were held in April 1, 2011 in Vienna during the official visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan Mr. Hamrokhon Zarifi to the Republic of Austria.

During this visit Minister attended the 856th OSCE Permanent Council meeting, where he made an address. Also, Minster H.Zarifi held a meeting with the OSCE Secretary General Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, and the Federal Minister for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria Michael Spindelegger.

Next round of Tajik-Austrian political consultations, which took place on October 8, 2012 in Dushanbe, showed consonance of views and approaches regarding threats and challenges as well as means of political solution of regional conflicts, including Afghanistan. Aiming to give an impulse to extension of bilateral relations in future, both sides have agreed to commence negotiations during official visit of the Federal President of the Republic of Austria Dr. Heinz Fisher to Tajikistan in March, 2013.

Fifth round the Tajik-Austrian political consultations took place on 26 March, 2014 in Vienna reviewed current bilateral relations and further development of cooperation between the two countries as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest.

Next two rounds of regular bilateral political consultations between Tajikistan and Austria were held in Dushanbe October 12-13, 2015 and June 6, 2016. The Austrian Delegations were headed by the Secretary-General of the Federal Ministry for European Integration and Foreign Affairs of Austria Michael Linhart and Ambassador Heidemaria Gürer, Head of the Department on Eastern Europe, South Caucasus, Central Asia and Central European Initiative of the Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs of Austria and respectively. During these consultations the sides exchanged views on the state and prospects for development of bilateral relations in political, trade-economic and cultural spheres, cooperation between the two countries in the framework of the European Union for Central Asia, priorities for Austria`s Chairmanship in Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in 2017 as well as other issues of mutual interest.

Legal Base of Bilateral Relations:

  • Agreement between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria about the bilateral foreign economic relations (February 24, 1994 Vienna);
  • Exchange of notes on recognition of contracts on the mutual relations signed earlier between the USSR and Austria (November 24, 1998 Vienna);
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Cooperation (2005 Dushanbe);
  • Agreement for the promotion and protection of investment between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria (December 15, 2010 Dushanbe);
  • Joint Statement of the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria on further strengthening of bilateral Relations (June 7, 2011 Vienna);
  • Convention between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income and Capital (June 7, 2011 Vienna);
  • Agreement between national Olympic Committee of the Republic of Tajikistan and Olympic Committee of the Austrian Republic (June 7, 2011 Vienna);
  • Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation between SUE “Tojikaeronavigatsiya” and Austrian company “FrequentisAG (March 12, 2013 Dushanbe);
  • Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Tajikistan and Austrian company “ASKIN D&Co” on establishment of scientific cooperation in the health sphere (March 12, 2013 Dushanbe);
  • Protocol amending the Protocol to the Convention between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital, signed at Vienna on 7 June 2011 (March 13, 2013
  • Dushanbe);
  • Agreement on cooperation between The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Tajikistan and The Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (March 13, 2013 Dushanbe);
  • Memorandum of understanding between The Agency of Standardization, Metrology, Certification and Trade Inspection under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan and Austrian Standards Institute (March 13, 2013 Dushanbe);
  • Air Service Agreement between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Austrian Federal Government (October 14, 2014 Dushanbe).

Economic Co-Operation

On February 24, 1994 during the visit of the delegation of Tajikistan headed by the Minister of International Economic Relations of Tajikistan Bilateral Agreement on External Economic Relations was signed, which provides a basis for economic and trade relations between companies, organizations and institutions of the two countries.

With the aim of development trade and economic cooperation Austrian economic delegation headed by Ambassador of the Republic of Austria to Tajikistan Heidemaria Gurer visited Tajikistan on December, 8-9, 2003. During this visit Austrian delegation held number of meetings with Tajik officials, as well as representatives of leading enterprises and companies of Tajikistan.

On April 26 – 28, 2005 Dushanbe hosted the First meeting of the Tajik- Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation. After that meeting sides have signed a protocol with aspect to enhance bilateral economic relations.

The Second meeting of the Tajik-Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation was convened on June 2-4, 2008 in Vienna.

The Third meeting of the Tajik-Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation took place on December 14-16, 2010 in Dushanbe. Issues of economic development, current status and a prospect of bilateral trade, cooperation in the fields of renewable energy sources (hydro, wind and solar energy), environmental protection, tourism, agriculture, forestry and telecommunication were included to the Agenda.

On 28 September 2012 the meeting Fourth meeting of the Tajik-Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation took place in Vienna.

of this meeting included cooperation in the sphere of energy and industry, agriculture and its products, health, tourism, standardization, document security, cooperation of Tajikistan with European Union and Tajikistan accession to the WTO. Heads and members of delegations made presentations and exchange views on above mentioned issues. On the conclusion of the 4th round of Tajikistan Austria Joint Commission on economic cooperation the Protocol has been signed by heads of delegations.

October 13-15, 2014 the Fifth meeting of the Tajik-Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation took place in Dushanbe.

Regular meeting of the Tajik-Austrian Joint Commission on Bilateral Foreign Economic Cooperation was held in Vienna November 9, 2016. This meeting covered the bilateral and multilateral approaches of the economic development and its perspectives, including the following issues: energy and mining, infrastructure, technologies for environment and facilities, industry, agriculture, technologies for health sphere, tourism, population registration, saved documents and e-government.

Exchanges of visits, private sector and business community meetings took place, which facilitated an intensification of trade and economic cooperation. Private sector and Tajik-Austrian entrepreneurs’ meeting was held on November 14-15, 2005 in Dushanbe. Meeting enabled to discuss a wide range of the issues of mutual concern and interest, including bilateral trade and economic cooperation.

Representative delegates of the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber visited Tajikistan on October 16–18, 2008 to explore a possibility of bilateral synergy. Business community members of the two countries have highly appraised the importance of meetings and negotiations held between private sector representatives.

On November 16-17, 2012 the Austrian Business Delegation headed by the Regional Director CIS, Austrian Federal Economic Chamber Mr. Heinz Walter visited the Republic of Tajikistan. The aim of visit was preparation of the official visit of Federal President of the Republic of Austria Dr. Heinz Fischer to the Republic of Tajikistan and to conduct in Economic Forum in Dushanbe during the official visit. At the end of visit the sides agreed to prepare and sign an Agreement on cooperation between The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Tajikistan and The Austrian Federal Economic Chamber during the official visit of Federal President of the Republic of Austria.

On September 10, 2014 Forum “The Economic and Investment Potential of the Republic of Tajikistan" took place in Vienna.

Delegation of the Republic of Tajikistan was headed by First deputy minister for Economic Development and Trade Mr. Nematjon Buriev. A wide range of representatives from Tajikistan and Austrian business circles and government bodies attended the Forum.

The main aim of organizing this event was to help Tajikistan entrepreneurs and companies to establish cooperation with Austrian counterparts, set up favorable conditions in order to attract more investments to country’s economy, contribute to the increasing trade turnover between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria.

During the Forum Tajikistan delegation has drawn attention of participants to investment priorities and capacities, investment projects in different areas, regulatory legislation related to foreign investments. Also, detailed information about legislation on rights of investors, other documents adopted and approved by Tajikistan Government and information about free economic zones were provided. In addition it was mentioned that necessary legal base for cooperation in various directions was set up during official visits of the heads of two states and parties should exploit these potentialities.

The Republic of Tajikistan and The Republic of Austria held Regular Forum “The Economic and Investment Potential of the Republic of Tajikistan" in Vienna on November 10, 2016. Delegation of the Republic of Tajikistan was chaired by First deputy Minister for Economic Development and Trade Mr. Saidrahmon Nazriev.

On April 3-5, 2017 the Austrian Business Delegation led by the Regional Manager Eastern Europe/Central Asia Austrian Federal Economic Chamber Dr. Michael Angerer visited the Republic of Tajikistan. April 4, 2017 Economic Forum conducted in Dushanbe and representatives of the 20 manufacturing companies and suppliers of equipments, technologies and services of Austrian Business took part in this event.

An aggregate volume of external trade of Tajikistan in the period of 2016 concluded at 4,7 million USD. The Republic of Tajikistan’s major export commodities to the Republic of Austria are cotton and aluminum, while our import from the Republic of Austria includes medicines, medical equipment, sugar, honey, forage processing aggregates and other products.

Scientific, Educational and Cultural Ties

Despite of establishing diplomatic relations between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Austria in 1992 the history of these relations has started much earlier. In 1972 capitals of Carinthia, the Klagenfurt city and the Tajikistan capital Dushanbe city were established twin-cities relationships. It should be mentioned that Klagenfurt is the first European city to establish twin-city relationship with Dushanbe.

On March 22, 1989, a Protocol on cooperation between the Magistrate of the Klagenfurt city and the Executive Committee of the Dushanbe city was signed within the framework of the joint cooperation. Tajik national teahouse, as a symbol of friendship from Dushanbe city, was built in one of the most beautiful parks of the Klagenfurt. Also on March 13, 1993, another Protocol on cooperation between the cities of Dushanbe and Klagenfurt for the period 1993-1994 was signed.

addition, Klagenfurt was the first European city for Tajikistan footballers. the middle of 1990 two Tajikistan’s soccer players from FC “Pamir-Dushanbe” Alexander Azimov and Valeriy Tursunov played for SK Austria Klagenfurt.

On September 18, 2013 the Embassy of the Republic of Tajikistan to Austria, in order to strengthen contacts between Dushanbe and Klagenfurt, initiated trip and meeting in Klagenfurt.

In subsequent years, contacts between the cities were conducted on a regular basis. In June 2017, twin cities exchanged letters and congratulations on the occasion of the appointment of the new mayor of Dushanbe, Rustami Emomali.

Science is another important field of cooperation between Tajikistan and Austria. Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Co-operation was signed between two countries. The Austrian scientists visit Tajikistan on October 2005.

Austrian political scientist, Ambassador Alfred Missong visited Tajikistan from May 29 to June 1, 2006 within the framework of cultural and educational cooperation. On the sidelines of this trip, Ambassador Missong had a number of lectures in Tajikistan’s high educational institutes under the titles of "The History of Austrian Diplomacy after 1945" and "The Austrian Presidency in the European Union".

The Diplomatic Academy of Vienna since 1997 with support of Government of the Republic of Austria, financial institutes and non-governmental organizations has been arranging the Special courses and trainings for young diplomats from CIS countries, including Tajikistan. During this period young diplomats from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan participated at 6 courses and the last special training programme for Central Asian and Mongolian diplomats were held from June 19th till July 7th, 2017.

Experts from Ministry of Education of the Republic of Tajikistan twice visited (November 2010 and October 2013) Vienna with the study trips and exchanged information on the latest reform steps in the educational systems of countries including the formation of and in-service training for teachers.

courses to learn German language is another direction for educational cooperation between both countries and within several years, in collaboration with the Embassy of the Republic of Austria, learning of German language are conducted at Tajik Pedagogical University.

Days of Austrian Culture in Tajikistan with wide participation of representatives of the Austrian arts, culture and education has been organized on May 30 – June 1, 2011, in Dushanbe.

On 19 March 2013 celebration of "Navruz" and presentation of "The Tajik Golden Heritage" book authored by the Republic of Tajikistan’s Foreign Minister Hamrokhon Zarifi, took place in Palace Belvedere of Vienna.

During the event a short documentary movie about "Navruz" traditions in Tajikistan and country’s achievements in various sectors was displayed. In addition, during presentation photos from "The Tajik Golden Heritage" book were demonstrated.