President Emomali Rahmon Delivers a Video Address at the Opening Ceremony of the Five General Education Schools with Instruction in Russian in Tajikistan

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Greetings, Mr Putin.

Dear education workers and schoolchildren,

I am sincerely happy to attend today’s opening ceremony of new educational institutions together with President of Russia Vladimir Putin.

I remember 2019, when the President of Russia and I launched this project to build five schools with Russian as the language of instruction in the cities of Khujand, Tursunzoda, Kulob, Bokhtar, and in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

I am happy that we have managed to fully implement it in a relatively short period of time, and now the younger generation has additional opportunities to get an education in new schools that have the latest in education technologies and equipment.

On behalf of the Government of Tajikistan and myself, I would like to thank the Government of the Russian Federation and you personally, Mr President, for your support and comprehensive assistance during the high-quality construction work and for opening the new educational institutions on time.

It is symbolic that they are opening their doors for teachers and schoolchildren this year, during the anniversary of diplomatic ties between our states. Over the last three decades, Tajikistan and Russia have achieved significant results in developing and strengthening our relations of strategic partnership, which encompasses almost all key spheres of cooperation today.

The consistent build-up of humanitarian ties, including in the areas of education, science and culture, has a special place on the bilateral agenda. Further expansion of cultural and humanitarian cooperation is a constant priority for discussion during regular meetings and contacts at the highest level.

Over this period, we have developed the necessary legislative base for education and research cooperation in our relations. More than 200 documents on bilateral cooperation have been signed between governments, relevant departments and universities of the two countries. They serve as a solid foundation for the further development of cooperation in education and science. A good foundation has been laid for comprehensive cooperation between the two countries’ research centres and universities.

Tajikistan and Russia’s cooperation includes many topical scientific and practical areas in the natural and hard sciences, mathematics and social science, as well as innovative technologies.

Our efforts to expand opportunities for receiving secondary and higher education in Russian are yielding the desired results. Today there are 39 schools in Tajikistan with Russian as the language of instruction, with about 27,000 students. There are also more than 160 mixed Tajik-Russian schools with about 70,000 pupils.

At the same time, in accordance with state standards, teaching of the Russian language is obligatory in the curriculum, and starting from second grade, it is studied in all general education schools – about 4,000 of them.

Today Russian teachers teach Tajik children in our educational institutions as part of a separate social project.

In this context, providing our schools with textbooks and manuals is still a topical issue. Russian-Tajik (Slavonic) University operates productively in Dushanbe, under the auspices of the two countries. In addition, branches of such prestigious Russian universities as Moscow State University, Moscow Power Engineering Institute and MISiS [National University of Science and Technology] are successfully operating in Tajikistan.

In general, considering students of RTSU and the branches of Russian universities I have mentioned, the number of Tajik young people getting a Russian education is more than 30,000, and about 25,000 citizens of Tajikistan are currently studying in over 700 universities in Russia.

Graduates of Russian universities are in high demand in various sectors of the national economy. They are the reason for the constantly growing pool of qualified applicants for jobs in the civil service, diplomacy, science and education, as well as culture and the arts.

We are interested in further expanding cooperation in the sphere of higher education. We welcome the opening of new branches of Russian universities in Tajikistan, which could train specialists in fields that are vital for our country’s development.

We are grateful to the Russian side for annually giving us an education quota in a wide range of disciplines that are in demand in our country.

Today the quota has reached 750, and the President Mr. Putin and I have agreed that it will be increased up to 1,000.

As we consistently implement the government’s language policy, we are careful to take an integrated approach to the development of the Russian language along with the state language. And this is no accident. As you know, according to the Tajikistani Constitution, Russian has the status of a language of interethnic communication.

Two years ago, the CIS Heads of State Council decided to declare 2023 the Year of the Russian Language. In this connection, we agreed to take additional measures to support and develop Russian in the Commonwealth countries, including Tajikistan.

In general, I would like to emphasise that Tajikistan is interested in further developing the full range of cultural contacts with Russia. In this context, the Government of Tajikistan is committed to adopting the necessary measures to expand cooperation between the educational, scientific and research institutions of the two countries, including in the sphere of training scientists and teachers.

Mr Putin,

Assembled guests,

In conclusion, I would like to express my gratitude to the builders and everyone who worked hard to make this project to build schools in Dushanbe, Khujand, Tursunzoda, Kulob, and Bokhtar a reality.

I would like to extend my best wishes to representatives of one of the most noble professions – our teachers, who begin their work in these educational institutions today. I believe that the knowledge gained by schoolchildren within these walls will help turn them into creators, who will ensure the sustainable development and prosperity of the country.

Best wishes also to our schoolchildren, who begin their studies in these institutions.

I am sure that both parents and children are very happy to get such a gift on Knowledge Day, which is celebrated today everywhere in Tajikistan.

I would also like to wish success and all the best to everyone involved in today’s important event.

Thank you for your attention.

Source: National information agency of Tajikistan