Nato-Russia Council

Nations discuss Afghan economic development projects

NATO-Russia Council Deputy Minister Yury SentyurinDeputy Energy Minister, Yury Sentyurin, co-chairs the Intergovernmental Commission on Russia-Afghan trade and economic cooperation.

Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister, Yury Sentyurin, participated in the NATO-Russia Council Afghanistan sub group’s meeting and provided a briefing to nations on Russia-Afghan bilateral relations and economic development projects, on 27 June.

In his presentation, Minister Sentyurin focused on the economic cooperation and joint energy projects between the two countries which are having a positive impact on Afghanistan’s infrastructure and economic development. Energy is a key topic with Russian investment contributing to infrastructure development projects in Afghanistan, including hydroelectricity projects and gas pipelines. Russia is Afghanistan’s third largest trading partner, after Pakistan and the US. Bilateral work is taken forward through the recently established Intergovernmental Commission on Russia-Afghan trade and economic cooperation.

The development of key infrastructure and the provision of economic opportunities clearly contribute more broadly towards security and stability in Afghanistan, now and in the future. After a lively exchange of views on this topic, the NATO-Russia Council representatives were in agreement that the crucial issue of economic development in Afghanistan would be an important subject to continue to address in the group, alongside more regular exchanges on the security situation in the country.

In addition to Minister Sentyurin’s briefing, the Chairman of the Afghan sub-group, Ambassador Stephen Evans provided a briefing of the ISAF Defence Ministers meeting which took place in Brussels on 6 June.