Candidate of Economic Sciences
Tajikistan is one of the poorest countries in Central Asia with an extremely low standard of living and a high unemployment rate. Tajikistan's economy needs very significant investment injections and is still heavily dependent on foreign aid. Unlike its neighbors in the region, Tajikistan does not have any significant energy reserves that can attract foreign investors. However, Tajikistan has other advantages. The most serious of them is its geographical location. The republic shares borders with Afghanistan, China, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan and can be seen as a favorable springboard for powers interested in strengthening their influence in the region.
Tajikistan is a member of such regional associations as the EurAsEC, CSTO and SCO, which to some extent determines the scope of its economic and military-political priorities. Nevertheless, it cannot be said that the Tajik leadership has a clearly defined foreign policy course. It focuses on the economic factor rather than the political one, and therefore Tajikistan is interested in cooperation with all States that are ready to provide the republic with real financial and economic assistance.
Russia began to show serious economic interest in Tajikistan relatively recently. In 2004, during the official visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to this republic, a number of economic agreements were signed. Prior to that, the dominant area of Russian-Tajik cooperation was cooperation in the military sphere.
MILITARY COOPERATION AND ITS CHALLENGES
At the time of the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, a number of Soviet military units and objects of strategic importance were located in Tajikistan. These are, first of all, units of the Gatchina 201st Motorized Rifle Division, stationed in Dushanbe, Kurgan-Tube and Kulyab; a helicopter repair plant in Ayni and the Nurek optical and electronic complex of the space forces ("Window"), which was under construction at that time.
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