During the 5th summit of the Caspian littoral states, Aktau will host nearly 600 foreign guests. Large-scale works on gardening have already been carried out in the city. Presidents of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Iran and Turkmenistan will meet at the summit to discuss and sign the main outcome document - the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea. The document, which was developed over the past 20 years, should put an end to the delineation of the marine area, military cooperation, the development of biological resources, the seabed and subsoil.
“This is a historic event, a very significant event especially for the Caspian countries and in particular for Azerbaijan. Now after the signing of the document, more precisely the convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea, many projects can be implemented. In my opinion, a fairly wide and fruitful cooperation will start,” senior UN expert on global energy issues Togrul Bagirov said.
In an interview with Kommersant newspaper, Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin said that according to the convention, the Caspian would not be recognized as a lake or sea. The Caspian will have a special legal status. This is explained by a set of specific geographic, hydrological and other characteristics, "said Karasin. According to experts, the signing of the convention will be an impetus for the implementation of a number of projects.
“The summit will mark not only the signing, but also the beginning of a new stage, the stage of cooperation. In the convention there is a point about the possibility of building so-called wires. That is, gas, oil and others, with the observance of naturally all measures of environmental protection, etc. Therefore, in principle this can be interpreted as an opportunity to start serious negotiations on the construction of the so-called trans-Caspian oil and gas pipelines,” Togrul Bagirov added.
“The 5th Caspian Summit is a kind of crown, the result of a long-term work is a new concept, it should ensure a stable, safe development of the entire region. There is such a difficult question connected with laying pipelines along the bottom of the Caspian Sea, because it is very important to take into account all environmental standards. You mustn’t create danger and pollute the sea. Therefore, the settlement of the legal status of the Caspian Sea, will give a different impetus to the development and transport potential of this basin,” Pavel Klachkov, Russian political analyst told CBC.
Negotiations on determining the legal status of the Caspian Sea began in 1994. In November 1996, an ad hoc working group was established in Ashgabat to draft a convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea at the level of deputy foreign ministers of the Caspian bordering countries.