By Baris Gundogan
ANKARA (AA) – The Turkish president will pay an official visit to Turkmenistan's capital Ashgabat on Saturday, where he will also participate in the 15th Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) summit.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan's two-day visit comes on the invitation of Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, Turkey’s Communications Directorate said in a statement on Friday.
He will hold meetings in which Turkey-Turkmenistan relations will be reviewed, the press release said, adding that opportunities for further bilateral cooperation will be discussed and views exchanged on regional issues.
Erdogan will then attend the summit, which will be held on Sunday under the theme of "Into the Future Together."
At the summit, views will be exchanged on increasing the effectiveness of the organization, of which Turkey is a founding member, expanding trade and transportation networks among member countries, and developing coordination and cooperation within the organization amid the fight against COVID-19.
Erdogan will also hold bilateral meetings with the leaders of some participating member states on the sidelines of the summit. He will hand over the organization's term presidency to the Turkmen president.
ECO, which was founded by Turkey, Iran and Pakistan in 1985 as a follow-up of the Regional Cooperation for Development, was later joined by Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan in 1992.
The organization holds summits, ministerial meetings, and regular sessions to cooperate on trade and investment.