ASHGABAT: The president of energy-rich Turkmenistan said in comments broadcast Saturday that his energy dependent country has been hit hard by low oil prices and he urged the government to diversify the economy. In a rare admission of the ex-Soviet nation’s economic troubles, President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov said the country needed to boost earnings and urged officials to cut spending. “The problems of the world economy have had a negative impact,” Berdymukhamedov told government officials at a cabinet meeting Friday, although the comments were only aired on state television Saturday. “These difficulties are increasingly affecting our country, (and) to a certain extent are stifling economic growth. In such conditions we are forced to transform our economic policies,” he told the cabinet meeting, urging officials to revise the state budget.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 5th, 2015.